To What Extent Was the Lack of Political Representation the Most Significant Cause of the 1905 Russian Revolution?

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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. Russia was the only country within Europe with no elected national parliament. The only form of elected representation (what the Tsar referred to as ‘senseless dreams’) was the “Zemstva”. The Union of Liberation demanded in December 1904, that a parliament should be set up because they felt the Russian population needed an outlet to express their views. At the time, the formation of political parties was illegal but despite this, they still existed. Every sector of society was represented through one of these illegal parties to act as opposition to the Tsarist autocracy. A number of parties set up used violence and terrorist activities to express their views. The Social Revolutionaries and the Social Democrats were set up to create a new society which gave power to the workers and peasants. The Social Revolutionaries were responsible for over 2000 assassinations from 1901-1905 including the Tsars uncle, Grand Duke Sergei in February 1905. The most moderate party – the liberals, represented the wealthy and educated members of society. Their aim was to share political power with a parliament. A growth in literacy rates caused an increased interest in politics especially in
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