Peter I “The Great”: Czar of Russia Peter “The Great” was an absolute monarch of Russia from 1682 until 1725. He is the most responsible sole person for “westernizing” Russia. The time period he lived in is known as the “Enlightenment” because so many European rulers were “Enlightened” in different ways and they impacted their governments, people, economy, etc. in a forward thinking way. The rulers would try to make their nations become more like what we are today, with ideas such as, no slavery, technological advancements, peace with other countries, etc.
In this essay, I am going to analyse the factors; the Russian Empire, the Russification policy, Enforcement within the Empire and the Tsar's Enemies to come to a conclusion on why the Russian Empire was so difficult to govern under the rule of the Tsar. Firstly, Russia was difficult to govern because of the Empire itself. The Empire was spread across two continents, this limited communication because of all the different nationalities throughout the Empire. Evidence of this comes from a pie chart, which comes from 'Russia under the Tsars.' It shows us all the principal nationalities in the Empire from 1897.
How significant was the work of reforming leaders in changing the nature of Russian government and society in the period from 1856-1964? Intentionalist historians such as Westwood, would say that the most significant factor for changing the nature of Russian government and society was the work of reforming leaders, such as Alexander II who carried out the Emancipation of the Serfs in 1861: “with the possible exception of Khrushchev, no other Russian ruler did so much to reduce the suffering of the Russian people”1. I agree with intentionalist’s views to an extent because reforming leaders did have a major impact in pushing reforms through however other factors of change must be considered. I also agree with a structuralist point of view, that the Russian people and key pressure groups like the Social Revolutionaries also played a significant part in changing the nature of Russian government and society. In addition, World War II introduced change through industrialisation, which was key to Russia’s success in the war.
In 1928, Joseph Stalin became one of the world’s most contentious leaders. During the period that Stalin was in control of mother Russia, he transformed the Soviet Union into a modern super power. He used certain methods to change Russia. He did this by modernizing the Russian economy with his Five Year Plans. He also increased industrial and agricultural production with his policy of collectivization.
A variety of long term and short term factors caused this revolution. The Tsarist autocratic rule was a key factor in the revolution. Most Russians lived in medieval conditions with all the diseases that poverty brings whilst the Tsar and aristocracy lived in opulent luxury. The people were enforced to pay heavy taxes whilst living in desperate poverty, famine and were at best badly educated. Some felt that other countries were progressing at a faster pace and the Tsar should embrace their way of thinking.
(Old and Sold) “The battle of Pultowa is one of the most famous battles in the world’s history. Charles and Peter, at that time the battle was fought, were the greatest rulers and warriors of the day, and the long and bitter struggle between them had been watched by all Europe”. (Old and Sold) Peter won the battle and with that he was able to accomplish a lot. “He was able to expand the territory of Russia and trade with it. He also introduced Russia to western culture.” (Boris Schorschoff) Although, even when Peter had finally started taking over Sweden, Turkey was left to take over.
Arguably Russia’s transformation from an autocratic state to a communist one was the greatest modification in the whole period 1855 to 1964, however, despite differing ideals there was in fact a large amount of continuity between the idealistically different styles of governance. Under Tsarist leaders, Russia experience differing levels of autocratic rule, interspersed with sporadic detours to democracy, yet upon the Communist takeover, there was a decisive shift towards autocratic dictatorship. Taking all this into consideration, the October Revolution can be seen as the most significant turning point in the development of Russian government, as the ideological shift influenced all subsequent decisions taken by the government of the USSR. Ideologically, the October Revolution in 1917 represented a unique turning point from Russia, as a 300 year old regime was unceremoniously discarded in favour of Marxism. Condemning the provisional government in his April Thesis, Lenin moved quickly to ensure the Bolshevik takeover was complete, consolidating
Brian Ernst 18th Century Russia...or Were There Two? There have been many historians argue whether the Petrine reforms and the reforms of the 18th Century Russian Czars caused a great rift in Russian society between the “world” of the nobility and that of the peasant majority, thus creating “two Russias”, that is, two Russian societies coexisting in the same era. To get to the heart of this debate, it is essential to look at the origin and development of both the nobility and the peasants in Russian history. After uncovering the developmental paths of each class, it is then necessary to look at the western movement started by Peter the Great and carried on by his successors throughout the eighteenth century. Specifically,
To what extent do you agree that Alexander III mainly used violence and repression to consolidate his power? During the time of the Tsarist regime in Russia it was common knowledge that the Tsar held the power, having full control of the country and any decision that took place in it however different Tsar’s consolidated their powers in different ways. In this essay I am going to discuss the way in which Tsar Alexander III consolidated his power by use of violence and repression, political measures and reform, however my main focus will be placed on violence and repression which I feel was most used by the Tsar. Violence and repression was a key factor in Russia for many centuries and was enforced by Tsarist leaders such as Alexander III who used it in many different ways the first of which being the increase in power that Russia’s secret police (The Okhrana) held during the time of Alexander’s reign. These powers included being able to arrest anyone at their own free will without permission of the state and infiltrating any group who were considered anti-Tsarist leading to the removal of terrorist and rebellious groups, helping to enhance the Tsar’s power even further.
This brought many different cultures into Russia. Therefore, the widespread diversity of people would have brought different languages, cultures, traditions, different mindsets and lots more. Most of the population did not like the way that they were being ruled, as the Tsarist Government decided to put in place several things to try and control the people. One was called the ‘Russification Policy’. This policy said that all non-speaking Russians were made to use the Russian language, which meant that Russian was taught in all schools and they had to be taught in Russian and no other language.