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

Russia 1905-1941

Extracts from this document...


Russia 1905-1941 Introduction to Russia At the beginning of the century Russia was difficult to rule for many reasons. 1.) Poor Communications - Russia was too big to effectively send messages across yet, you couldn't send messages by road either as most roads hadn't been paved making it difficult to pass across. Many rivers were impassable and the Trans Siberian Railway took over a week to go from Moscow to Vladivostok 2.) Diverse languages - many Russians spoke French or other languages rather than Russian, as most were not Russian and didn't consider themselves to be, they considered themselves to be Georgians or Kazaks, not Russian. People also resented what was called Russification, this was the process of making people speak Russian, wear Russian clothes and obey the Russian Tzar. 3.) Sparse Population - Much of Russia was uninhabitable due to the Tundra in the North, most of Northern Russia is within the Arctic circle and so becomes desolate. 4.) Illiteracy - much of Russia was illiterate and those who could speak and write Russian preferred French anyway. 5.) Size - Russia spanned over two continents when Moscow was eating breakfast, it was an evening meal in Vladivostok. The Peasants Conditions for the peasants were very poor, many peasants used to be serfs, they were owned by the lords and would work on the lords land, when it was changed most of the land was given to the lords and it was the best land. At the time there was also a great population growth whereby the population increased by 50%, between 1860 and 1897.All of this inequality led to a revolution against the Tzar (Czar) in 1905. The Urban Workers The urban workers worked in place such as St. Petersburg and Moscow. The workers were treated unfairly, paid terrible wages, and forced to work long and hard. Their houses were small flats and from these they were expected to raise families. ...read more.


They headed back to European Russia furious at the Tzar and Stolypin. The Dumas that were supposed to aid the country just bowed down to the Tsars wishes. When a third Duma came to power in 1906, they revolted against the Tzar, he disbanded them and began working on a fourth Duma. Stolypin decided that the fourth Duma should have more nobles to stop the revolts, but even the nobles revolted. Stolypin then enforced military rule by setting up militia courts whereby people could be executed on the spot. This became known as Stolypins' noose. The freedom of speech noted in the October manifesto didn't exist. Political newspapers were banned and anything found to be against the Tzar was considered to be treason even political jokes. However some things did get better in Russia, between 1906 and 1914 there was an industrial boom in Russia thanks to the Duma. They rose to become an economic superpower with the 4th largest steel, coal, oil and pig iron in the world. This led to jobs becoming available to the peasants. World War One However not enough good things happened in the same ratio as to bad. In 1917 there was another revolution. This was not helped by Russia entering the war in 1914 and loosing early lowering morale even more and showing the Tzar to be useless. Another problem with WWI on the Russian front was that only 1 in 3 men had rifles the rest waited for someone else to die before they got a rifle. Also all of the Strong people were fighting the war meaning only weak people could farm, the same applied to industry, not enough could be made to support Russia. The Russians fell bankrupt, as the bank had not got its money back. The Russians had to borrow 90% of it's war funding. Conditions also went down, people were expected to work longer, harder and for a smaller wage. The price of goods increased as well to make matters worse. ...read more.


Lenin renamed the Bolshevik party the Communists at this point and renamed Russia, the USSR (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics). Within the Parliament the Social Revolutionaries won a majority of seats and so Lenin closed down the assembly after only one day. Communism or Dictatorship ? In 1917 Lenin wanted to create a Communist state whereby he had as much and more power than the Tzar did. In 1917 Lenin set up the Cheka, his secret police, the earlier equivalent of the KGB. The Tzar had his own secret police called the Okrana, most Cheka members where ex-Okrana. They would spy and assassinate anyone they believed to be an anti-Communist, most of the time without trial. In 1918 Lenin was almost assassinated, this triggered the Red Terror campaign where over 500,000 men were found to be anti-Communist and were killed. Lenin also banned all other political parties, it was kept this way until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. The media was also state controlled, only Bolshevik newspaper could be sold. Peace with Germany Lenin had to end the war at any cost, he feared it would be the war that would overthrow him just as the Provisional government had been. He knew he couldn't fight his enemies in Russia and elsewhere, so on March 3rd 1918, Trotsky travelled to Brest-Litovsk to sign a peace treaty with the Germans. These terms were very harsh, Russia lost over one-sixth of it's overall population and three-quarters of it's overall coal, oil and steel areas to the Germans. The Communists had paid a high price but they had ended the war However the areas to the north that Russia had lost became independent states and the Ukraine corn growing area was taken by the League of Nations when Germany signed the Treaty of Versailles in 1919, and given to Poland. Another problem with his treaty was that afterwards the Russians were seen as traitors as they "gave into" German demands. This led to them being banned from the League of Nations in 1919 as well as Germany. ...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. Russia 1905-1941 'Explain how the unpopularity of the Provisional Government contributed to the Bolshevik ...

    Government's power and authority was severely tested and its unpopularity led to the recognition of the Bolshevik Party in Russian society. After another failed offensive against Austria in July 1917, a 100,000 soldiers and Bolsheviks roamed Petrograd chanting 'all power to the Soviets'.

  2. Stalins Russia, 1924-53 revision guide

    This reveals that he was playing a tactical game. * Stalin was very skilled in spotting the weaknesses of his opponents and in devising tactics to outmanoeuvre them. * Stalin was aware that the successful mobilisation of the state during the Civil War provided many lessons for the future.

  1. Why was there a revolution in Russia in 1905?

    Although the importance of the war in causing the revolution can be questioned when considering that the war ended in September 1905, not as a concession by the Nicholas II, who obviously didn't think it was significant enough in causing the revolution justify immediately withdrawal, even though he did take other measures such as the October manifesto.

  2. Hitlers Germany

    refused to grapple with the Nazi legacy. Important work on Hitler and National Socialism took place in Britain and the United States rather than in Germany, where historians were still reluctant to reopen old wounds and where the relevant documents were difficult to obtain because they had been appropriated by the victorious powers and stored in faraway places.

  1. "Stalin transformed the Soviet Union from a backward country into a strong modern state ...

    Workers that did not meet their targets or failed to work a full amount of time in a factory were dealt with severely. First offence of absenteeism was heavily punished with fines, loss of ration cards and/or dismissal. The punishment for a second offence was prison and a forced labour camp.

  2. How secure was the Tsars power up to 1904

    Alexander III was an imposing figure, over six feet tall and physically strong. He relished his autocratic power and believed that the old 'Nicholas' system was the best way to rule Russia. He was thought to be unimaginative and sincere but not very bright.

  1. Why did revolution in Russia succeed in February 1917 and not in 1905? (30 ...

    After a plea to share power, the Tsar was refused by Mikhail Rodzianko, head of the Provisional Government, and the Tsar was subsequently advised by army chiefs and remaining ministers to abdicate.

  2. The Impact of Stalins Leadership in the USSR, 1924 1941. Extensive notes

    so that they were ready to accept new policies when they came their way. As they were, many peasants were not happy about the changes coming in Russia, which showed Stalin his need for the use of propaganda. 1. All aspects of life were monitored by the Agitation and Propaganda Department (schools, newspapers, arts and media).

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