Even so, the zemstvo did allow the greater population more say in the ways they wanted a small part of their lives to be run. Also, the October Manifesto in 1905 promised the establishment of fundamental civil freedoms and the State duma, with participation for those deprived of voting powers and a powerful legislative role. The October Manifesto was the first time during Russian history that the tsar was willing to share political power in national government, and the Manifesto suggested that a national parliament was created. To many liberals, this was a crucial breakthrough. The Dumas were the government’s response to the 1905 revolution, and the tsar’s granting of a duma in the October Manifesto was the most striking of the concessions made to the liberals.
In the case of the Provisional Government they changed it from autocratic to democratic and Lenin changed it to a one party state; although the result was different the basis was the same. In some cases all of the rulers passed reforms that they had no choice whether to or not, it was simply necessary. All of the Tsars wanted to uphold their autocratic position, Alexander III most of all due to what happened to his father, so keeping absolute control was essential. Nicholas II was the only tsar to make any major political reforms due to the Tsar’s wanted to keep their power. However, Nicholas II had no choice to create the Duma because of the 1905 revolution; so he reluctantly did so he did not completely lose his position.
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.
Additionally there were developments that occurred without war, which illustrates that involvement in war was not the only cause for change. Therefore war was an important catalyst and factor to significant changes but was not the sole cause of change. The war that caused most change was Word War One due to its role in the February revolution in 1917 and the fall of the provisional government in the October revolution. The defeats of the war dwindled support from liberals and Octobrists for the Tsarist regime, which was further worsened by criticism from organisations including the Central War Industries committee and the union of Zemstva. This formed support and reason for the Progressive Bloc.
There were many short and long term effects of the Russian revolution. Firstly the short term effects following the Russian revolution were that Lenin hoped the constituent assembly (parliament) would show the rest of Russia how good the Bolsheviks could be for the Russian nation and how popular their leadership was. However they only gained 161 seats, compared to the social revolutionaries who won 267 seats. Obviously the Bolsheviks had become popular in Petrograd, but beyond the capital the population hadn’t been more in favour of the social revolutionaries and hadn’t been convinced by Lenin’s promise yet. In reaction to this, he shut down the assembly in order to keep power for himself.
Finally the failures of the Provisional Government made them vulnerable which coincidentally worked to advantage the Bolsheviks. Personally, I believe that the vulnerable position of the Provisional Government, timing of the governments mistakes, discontent of the soldiers as well as the workers and the occasional guidance from other Bolshevik leaders, was exploited by Lenin, alongside his popular policies and leadership skills he catalyzed the revolution that was inevitable, planning it in such a way that it would benefit long term and not short-term as it had done in 1905 and February 1917. In disagreement, the failures of the provisional government to make the correct decisions led to the Bolsheviks’ success because the Bolsheviks were efficient in using this time to take control of the vulnerability of the Provisional Government which had caused this upon itself. The first mistake was allowing Lenin return from Germany in April as a part of democracy terms, since Lenin, despite being
A study of Russian governments in the period 1855 – 1964 suggests that Russia simply exchanged one form of autocracy for another after 1917. How far do you agree? When the February revolution brought an end to Tsarist rule, there was a strong belief that the instatement of the Provisional Government would lead to a more democratic Russia. However in deposing the Provisional Government, the October Revolution had removed any such hope. The totalitarian Government of the Communist Party continued and intensified many aspects of the Tsarist regime including use of the secret police and an intolerance for opposition and democracy in general.
When his rivals were expelled from the Politburo, they were removed because the majority of the members voted for this. Therefore, Stalin’s action in order to gain power were quiet legal. After he was invited into the main committee of the Bolsheviks, he then gained other beneficial minority posts such as being an executive of the committee and becoming head of their party newspaper “Pravda”. Stalin, did not take part in any major roles during the October rising. During the civil war, he was consistent in disobeying orders made from Lenin and Trotsky, as they were the main organisers.
This was a dramatic change from the Bolshevik party's position in 1917 when the party enjoyed widespread support amongst the peasants, workers and soldiers who saw in the Bolshevik's the best hope for popular revolution. By the early 1920's however this had all changed. The Bolshevik's had lost the majority of its popular support after a ferocious Civil War and several economic disasters, political failures and mismanagement. Throughout the period 1917 to 1924 the Bolshevik's tried desperately to consolidate their power and regain control of the Country. Lenin’s contribution to the Bolshevik Party was an essential factor in their consolidation of power during 1917-1924, however; Lenin’s role was not the only factor contributing to their success.
How is the success of the Bolshevik rising in October 1917 best explained? By October 1917 the Bolsheviks had successfully consolidated their power within the Petrograd soviet as well as over through the provisional government. In this essay I will try to explain how the success of the Bolshevik uprising is best explained putting into consideration actions, beliefs and circumstances. I believe that the circumstances as the time in Russia significantly affected the outcome of October and it influenced many of the beliefs people within Petrograd had as well the peasants and parties within the soviet. Furthermore, the circumstances allowed the Bolshevik actions to be successful, as well as, undermine any attempts of the provisional government to hold on to the little power they had.