• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Alexander III bequeathed Russia a revolution. How far do you agree with this statement?

Extracts from this document...


´╗┐Alexander III bequeathed Russia a revolution. How far do you agree with this statement? Alexander III bequeathed Russia a revolution but there are a few factors that could suggest revolution was inevitable. It could be said that the rumbling of revolution in Russia had been gathering strength underneath the calm surface for some time; and Alexander III's reactionary repressions were all that was needed to push them over the edge. It was through Alexander III's desire to maintain dominant Autocratic rule that he crushed the shoots of liberalism that had just started to grow. Unlike Alexander III, his father was known as the 'Tsar Liberator' and had brought in many reforms which changed the overall balance of society in the Empire. However, through the assassination of his father, Alexander III abhorred the thought of losing complete control and supremacy. Any reforms to Russia would almost definitely lead to the decline in power of Russia's autocracy. Any reduction in the power of Russia's autocracy might also impact the power of Russia's monarchy. One of his main priorities was to make sure that Autocracy never weakened. He made it very clear he did not approve of his father's reforms and as soon as he became Tsar he went on a process of reversing and undoing the progress set in motion by his father. Alexander III made several changes to the government structure and his ministers; and this pushed Russia closer to revolution. ...read more.


This led to the creation of the Marxist party; set up by Trotsky (who was a Jew). This proves that Russification only increased revolutionary feeling in the heart of Russia. It could be said that Alexander III did not think this political policy through because in effect half of the population now had another reason to hate the Tsar. One of the key events in what would turn out to be the start of Russia?s autocratic ruin was: appointing Sergei Witte as financial Minister in 1892. Russia was a vast and underdeveloped country whose economy was mainly based on agriculture. It had not had an industrial revolution whereas many other European powers had. Sergei Witte believed Russia should be more powerful and his views on how to do so were centred around economic development. Witte's reforms, known as 'The Great Spurt', brought in many transformations and gave the peasants a sense of freedom and progress never experienced before. Unfortunately, for all its advantages, industrialisation had some adverse consequences. The working class was: exploited, poorly treated, and clustered together in large numbers and therefore susceptible to revolutionary ideas. Witte's policies included: the emphasis on production of capital goods such as iron, steel coal and machinery; the building of the Trans-Siberian Railway; the creation of a new educational system (to train personnel for industry); and the 'Witte system' for economic development. ...read more.


Also the introduction of a new judicial system meant that there was a trial by jury that ordinary Russians participated in instead of the Tsar's officials. He also introduced the first form of elective government known as the zemstva. These local units were limited but had control over elementary education and road building. Because Russians had started to feel what progress and development was like; they resented Alexander III?s reactionary rule. It was Alexander's determination to return to dominant Tsarist control that bequeathed Russia a revolution. By the end of Alexander III's reign there was no doubt that Autocratic power had been re-established. All of Alexander II's social and political progress had been eradicated and modernisation halted. 'Russia was now the most repressive state in all Europe'. Alexander III did not have the ability to foresee that the causes he cared for and the means by which he obtained them caused the eventual destruction of the way of life and government he wished to preserve. His repressions helped set into motion the events that would eventually take Russia to the brink of revolution. Unrest had built under Alexander III and what seemed to be the government's ability to keep control was actually just a temporary solution to a much wider problem. Those who wanted change knew that they would have to take it, as they could not expect major reform to come from the government of Russia. The desire for change began before Alexander III stepped onto the throne. He just completed the journey already set in motion by Alexander II's liberal reforms. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 essays

  1. Stalins Russia, 1924-53 revision guide

    Anyway, it was essential to have some grain stored in case there was a bad harvest the next year. * Most peasants were basically conservative. They had supported the Bolsheviks in order to get rid of their landlords and to get their hands on land.

  2. To What Extent Were the Reforms of Alexander II Intended to Preserve and Strengthen ...

    The judges were made independent and neutral and paid well from the public purse to avoid bribery and corruption. This newly introduced independent bar encouraged the growth of the legal profession in Russia and was a step forward in modernising the country.

  1. "Mussolini was an all powerful dictator" - How accurate is this statement?

    Another possible threat to Mussolini's power would have been the media in Italy, which could turn public support against him, as it did during the Matteotti crisis. Thus Mussolini saw the danger of the media and took measures to control it so his per was not threatened by it again.

  2. Compare and contrast the policies of Alexander II and Alexander III

    Russia, in comparison to the other great powers, was incredibly backward and underdeveloped ? in 1897 only 4 percent of the population of Russia belonged to the industrial working class. To aid the process of industrialisation both Tsars had to introduce some drastic financial and economic reforms in order to keep up with the rest of the world.

  1. How far did government policies change towards agriculture in Russia in the period 1856-1964? ...

    Deaths from the 1921-22 Famine American Experience. (2011). The Great Famine. I needed a concrete answer to the question of how many Russian?s died during the famine. The source gave a good overview in terms of a brief written explanation and an attached video link.

  2. 'Alexander III was the most successful Tsar in the period 1855-1917'. How far do ...

    until 1903, and the start Peter Stolypin's agricultural reforms. Here, once again, there was mixed success. On the one hand, in 1911, 90 per cent of households were still strip farming, and the repartitioning of arable land failed to catch on in the central regions where land hunger and overpopulation were at their worst.

  1. How far did Alexander III successfully solve the problems he faced in 1881, by ...

    and were unsuccessful are as follow: He feared his father?s assassination, he had a fear of being assassinated himself since many disappointed people amongst the educated classes began to believe that the only way to truly modernize Russia would be the eradication of Tsarism itself which resulted to some Tsarist

  2. Was Alexander II more successful than Alexander III in coping with the problems ...

    On a more social level the repression experienced under Alexander III was somewhat archaic and was a step in the completely wrong direction. The persecution of the Jews was most horrific, they were forced to live in restricted areas and only a limited number were allowed in education.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work