To what extent was the lack of political representation the most significant cause of the 1905 revolution? There were a number of different causes that contributed to the start of the 1905 Russian revolution however some were more significant than others. One of the contributing factors was the lack of political representation due to the existence of an autocratic regime. Whilst this was an important factor, the most significant factors were the social and economical issues that caused unrest amongst the Russian population. The long-term policies of Russification imposed by the Tsar in the 1880s, caused a lot of political unrest within Russia and these contributed to the 1905 revolution.
Firstly, the opposition groups of the Tsar were known as the Populists, the Liberals and the Marxists. Each group had its own ideas on what was needed for Russia and each group wanted change, however, there were many problems within the groups and none of them were willing to work with each other. The Populists who were mainly concentrated on establishing a democratic government used violent tactics such as terrorism and assassinations, the most famous being the assassination of Tsar Alexander II. Within the groups, there were many issues, which they refused to work with each other to solve. For example this caused divide within the populists leading to the formation of the Land and Liberty (1876) and the Black Repartition and the radical terrorist group People’s Will (1879).
This was probably due to their authoritarian ideology. It can be considered a fact that for the majority of the 1855-1964 period, the Russian citizens had little if any political freedom. Despite the legalization of political parties in 1905, this was a very short lived concession as Lenin revoked this in 1920. A similar approach was taken by Alexander III in reversing the reforms of Alexander II, including a reduction in power for the Zemstva. A recurring theme throughout the period is the regime’s desire to maintain autocracy, which Lenin’s disregard for democracy in any area and opposition shows.
Another factor to the growth of opposition against the Tsar was due to the Rasputin becoming advisor to Alexandria as Nicholas the second went to war. During September 1915 and December there was frequent changes such as; 4 prime ministers ,5 interior ministers and 3 ministers of agriculture. This made it hard for people of Russia to keep up and it made no improvements to Russia’s society. In addition this made the Tsar hated among the people and the opposition grew against him. However, if Alexandra accepted reforms from the Duma instead of Rasputin a reduction of opposition would of
This basic form of opposition was never truly effective as their actions were simply put down by the government partly due to their failure to unite and lack of ideology and political demands. This was, however, not the only internal opposition to Tsar Alexander II with the “Going to the People” movement emerging in 1874. Here young members of the Russia intelligentsia went to the peasants breaching to them about their ideas about how life should be lived. This proved unsuccessful, they failed to appeal to the peasantry and the regime managed to arrest members showing them to be ineffective at this point. However, the populist movement developed from here, eventually splitting into two groups; the Black Partition and the People’s Will.
Nicholas II was the last tsar of the Romanov dynasty, and his own arrogance and incompetence was a key factor in what led him to that title. His decision to maintain an autocratic government, fight in the Russo-Japanese war, and, ultimately, drag Russia into World War I, proved he was not fit to rule, and his actions led to the destruction of his dynasty. In these ways, Nicholas II, while faced with many problems, may have survived had he not ruled the way he did. Nicholas II was an implacable autocrat, and his fear of change alienated the Russian people from their leader. When Nicholas was young, he witnessed his grandfather, Alexander II, being assassinated by terrorists.
Hence, though peasant life was at its best in its history, all these reforms did for the majority was ignite the hope that more liberating reforms were to come. Unfortunately the untimely assassination of Tsar Liberator by the extremist group, ‘The Peoples Will’ led to the rise in power of Alexander 3rd, who’s views towards the ruling of Russia differed greatly from his fathers. Many of the liberties granted through the reforms were stripped by Alexander 3rd’s own reforms. Peasants control over courts was restricted as courts for government opponents became government controlled. Many government opponents would have been protesting about how unfair the Russian system was towards peasants and hence through trial by jury, they would have been sympathised with.
Opposition to the Tsarist regime increased due to a number of reasons many of which could have been helped and others that were more natural. The key aspects of the opposition of the Tsars was Wittes programme of industrialisation, which while vital to Russia, exchanged the loyalist peasants into the disgruntled working class. While there were problems that the Tsar could not control such as the great amounts of other nationalities wanting independence and resisting Russification, such as the Poles and Jews. In 1881 opposition started due to ordinary people having little to no rights, as it was a criminal offence to question the Tsar and with no parliament to try and change the course of their country they would have to rely on the rich autocratic Tsar to decide to make changes to help the common people. As the government had strict censorship on books and journals when information did get through it would usually be made even more powerful as the government had attempted to ban it.
Compare and Contrast Essay Decline of the Han vs. Decline of the Roman Empire The collapse of the Han and the Roman Empires were both due to internal conflicts within the government and among their people. Both empires started to fall apart as disorganization and lack of a central government began to influence the whole empire. Political chaos led to the breakdown of the economy which spread to other things, and the spread of new religions came too late to save the crumbling empires from the destruction of themselves. The downfall of both civilizations began as their political rulers’ superiority became so disorganized and chaotic that everything just started to fall apart. Citizens began to revolt and in the Han dynasty in 220 C.E., the emperor was rebelled against among middle and lower class peasants and was eventually disposed of.
As long as the tsar had his army he was unconquerable. For fighting in the First World War the tsar had to pay a high price for his army: Many soldiers got killed and the others soldiers were disappointed in the tsar and joined the group of the supporters of a revolution. During his absence in Russia, for he was taking the role as a general in the army, rumors spread that the tsarina, the tsar’s wife, had an affair with Rasputin, a mysterious man who was playing an important role in the royal family, and that Rasputin was involved in important political actions. For the Russian people it was antipathy. The power of the tsar collapsed and a man named Vladimir Ilich Lenin received the attention of the Russian people.