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

The Russian Revolution of October 1917 was potentially the most politically formative event of world history in the period 1879-1980. It saw the end of Russian autocracy, and gave rise to the first self-declared Socialist government.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

In considering the process of change in the relationships between the powers and the ways in which this affected the balance of power in the period 1879-1980, how far can the Russian Revolution of October 1917 be seen as a key turning point? The Russian Revolution of October 1917 was potentially the most politically formative event of world history in the period 1879-1980. It saw the end of Russian autocracy, and gave rise to the first self-declared Socialist government. The Russian Revolution would serve to influence the world post-World War II, and supported by the Nazi-Soviet Pact, be of direct compliance of the largest ideological conflict in modern world history - the Cold War. In doing so, it would change the lives of millions of Europeans, for example the Berlin Wall, see the spread of Communism in the East, such as Eastern European spheres of influence, and plunge the world into nuclear darkness. However, it is also possible to argue that the revolution was merely one of many branches of political change that sprung from the First and Second World Wars. Similarly, the nuclear arms race and d�tente were turning points in which mirrored the pre-World War One naval race - in their own right, militarism and influence superseded the Russian Revolution and ideology. ...read more.

Middle

Europe respectively), Stalin was apparently more paranoid about Capitalist invasion into Eastern Germany, which had since the Russian Revolution been prophesied by Russian Communists - Stalin closed the road, rail and canal links between West Germany and West Berlin, resulting in the infamous Berlin Airlift by the Westerners to aid two million West Berliners. The underlying cause is generally understood by, at least more orthodox historians, to be an ideological one. Furthermore, the course of the Cold War would re-emphasise the Russian Revolution's significance in recent history, having blown away Russia's pre-1917 understanding with the West. After the end of World War Two, Churchill proclaimed that "From Stettin, in the Baltic, to Trieste, in the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the continent."7 Edward R. Murrow, an American journalist, sought to blame the War on the Communist expansionism in a 1961 film clip called "The Ideological Battle Between the U.S. and Soviet Union", although liberal historians argue that expansionism was not the cause, suspicion of the Western invaders and devastators otherwise were. Nevertheless, both Churchill and Murrow, despite the 15 year separation between them, believed heavily in the ideological aspects of American-Soviet relations. Francis Fukuyama would write, as the Berlin Wall came down, "The End of History?", an article which would ascertain a victory for liberal-democracies and ...read more.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the Russian Revolution was not a singular event - it, in itself, was not the cause of the Second World War or the Cold War, or the various events that compounded the two exponentially. Furthermore, one could argue that spheres of influence and military developments played clear roles in the development of world relations in the 20th century. Nonetheless, the ideological impact of the Russian Revolution was a significant turning point in the period 1879-1980, and arguably was the most formative and key turning point. By Victoria Millinship; word count: 1999 1 MI5 records [https://www.mi5.gov.uk/output/the-communist-threat.html] 2 T. Morris/D. Murphy, European History 1870-1991, 3 Rauschning, Hermann, Hitler Speaks: A Series of Political Conversations With Adolf Hitler on His Real Aims, Kessinger Publishing, 2006,ISBN 142860034, pages 136-7 4 The Nazi-Soviet Pact, original text [http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/1939pact.html] 5 As above. 6 Farmer, Alan, "Access to History: An Introduction to Modern History 1890-1990" edit. Randall, Keith, Hodder Education, ISBN 978-0-340-75366-8, pp. 276 7 Churchill, Winston, "Sinews of Peace" speech, 1946. 8 D. Murphy/T. Morris, International Relations 1870-1991, pg. 78 9 Farmer, Alan, "Access to History: An Introduction to Modern History 1890-1990" edit. Randall, Keith, Hodder Education, ISBN 978-0-340-75366-8, pp. 44 10 Woodrow Wilson's Fourteen Points (and commentary), [http://web.jjay.cuny.edu/jobrien/reference/ob34.html] 11 D. Murphy/T. Morris, International Relations 1879-2004, pg. 117 ?? ?? ?? ?? ...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. How important was Lenin to the success of the October 1917 Revolution?

    Study the period from 1924 to 1941. In what ways did Lenin continue to be of significance even after his death? When Lenin died on 21st January 1924, he left behind him a country unsure of the direction it was taking.

  2. Why Were There Two Revolutions in Russia in 1917?

    been a tiny, radical Marxist party, with most of their leaders in exile or in prison. However, after the revolution, the Provisional Government released all political prisoners, including many Bolshevik leaders. Many of these, including Joseph Stalin and Vyacheslav Molotov, began to build up their party once again.

  1. The 1917 Revolution.

    The workers did not go into the street but more than 100,000 went on strike. Then during the next fortnight, with an aggravation of disturbances due to a breakdown of the food-rationing system, there were further strikes culminating in mass invasion of the central area of Petrograd from the industrial suburbs.

  2. 'Without Lenin there would have been no revolution' - David Footman, an academic British ...

    Therefore, this suggests Lenin had planned to overthrow the new government. After his arrival in Petrograd this meant that the Bolsheviks were now reunited. The April Theses was issued the following day, and contained the new Bolshevik policies, this included: > A worldwide socialist revolution (he wanted every country to become Communist)

  1. 'In the context of the period 1715-1815 to what extent were economic factors the ...

    In other words, Enlightenment theory was too abstract to be a fundamental reason for the revolution, unlike the economy. However, there have been many historians that have opposed Burke's theory, attempting to look at Enlightenment from a different perspective. As early as 1791, Thomas Paine defended the Revolution against Burke's criticism.

  2. How far can the October revolution be considered a popular revolution?

    the government incapable of offering a solution, something that would act as an excuse to the people as to why exactly it was that that the Provisional Government (and its side-kick, the Petrograd Soviet) needed to be removed from power, as had happened with the Czar when he assumed the

  1. Russia and its Locomotive of History

    The Zemstva (small governments that represented peasants, townspeople and the gentry in each village) were also established in 1864 and extended a small level of democracy at a local level. The idea of a revolution was implemented notably during and after the defeat of the Crimean War - thus each

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

    Magnitogorsk Prof. D. Lanegran. Magnitogorsk. Macalester College A very in-depth essay on the city of Magnitogorsk and its steel works. I was looking for a brief explanation to back up my point which I more than found. I?m confident it?s reliable due to the author?s credentials and its consistency with other sources.

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