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

Why did the Bolshevik establish a dictatorship in Russia in the period 1918-24? - Describe the impact of communist policy on culture and religion?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

(i) Why did the Bolshevik establish a dictatorship in Russia in the period 1918-24? (ii) Describe the impact of communist policy on culture and religion? The Bolshevik party, led by Lenin, established a dictatorship in Russia during 1918-24 to secure their position in authority. In 1918 Russia entered into Civil war, with both internal and external powers attempting to seize power from the Bolshevik. The Bolshevik party used this to strengthen their chances of winning the war, against overwhelming odds. When the Bolshevik party came into power after the 1917 October revolution, they did so by aggressive, rather than diplomatic means. Therefore they were not seen as the 'legal' rulers of Russia, and were met with hostility from many groups, such as the autocracy, nobles, church etc. The Bolshevik party was not even in the majority, for at the Constituent Assembly in 1917, the SR were the more popular party, beating the Bolshevik (SR-21 million votes, Bolshevik-9million votes). This was seen as a major threat by Lenin, as it questioned the Bolshevik right to rule, and so by dissolving all other political parties by 1923 and setting up a dictatorship it ensured that this threat to power was effectively dealt with. ...read more.

Middle

The Cheka, under Bolshevik orders assassinated Tsar Nicholas 2, along with allegedly 10 other members of his family (only 9 bodies were found in total). This ensured that there would never again be a Tsar as ruler of Russia; Bolsheviks were now a true dictatorship government. It is clear that Lenin, along with many Bolshevik members saw that a dictatorship was essential in order for the Bolsheviks to maintain power and authority. They were a weak party, and so the threat of being removed from power, like the Provisional Government was apparent, especially after the Constituent Assembly. With events such as the Kronstadt Mutiny in 1921, the Tambov Rising in 1920-1 and the Civil War in 1918-21, the Bolsheviks only sure way of remaining in government was to set up a dictatorship. The arrival of the Bolshevik government had a great effect on every aspect of people's lives; including culture and religion. The traditional 'High Culture', which was strongly encouraged during the Tsarist regime, was disliked by the Bolsheviks and replaced by 'Popular Culture', which appealed to the masses. ...read more.

Conclusion

For the church symbolised greed and oppression to the Bolsheviks, but their soviet beliefs stated that everyone should be equal. In 1918 Lenin went so far as to issue a decree that the church became separate from the state. This meant that a lot of the church land became state property, and it was not longer the official Russian religion. Religious education was banned in schools and many churches and monasteries were closed down. After the Civil war Lenin took a softer approach to the Church, as hatred towards the Bolsheviks over religious freedom was growing. In 1920 a survey revealed that 55% of Russians were still active Orthodox Christians, and so Lenin had not been successful in eliminating it. The Bolshevik party had a great deal of pressure and expectations from the people, to live up to their promises, when coming into power. Although they clearly improved many social aspects such as art and literature, they were still unable to affectively change the religion. The Bolshevik heavily criticised the Tsar for the lack of rights given to the people, but was extremely hypocritical, as they too were attempting to take away people's religion, in order for them to convert to their communist views. ...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

    * Under Stalin art had to inspire greater productivity, be a propaganda vehicle for creating the new Communist society * Only approved writing could get published, music played, art displayed. What was acceptable wasn't always easy to discern, as Shostakovitch discovered when Stalin went to see his opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsenk.

  2. How successfully did Lenin establish Communist rule 1918-1924?

    It encouraged trade between peasants, and was in essence a very Capitalist idea. By doing this, Lenin gave the peasants the incentive to work which under war communism they had not had, as they had the chance to earn money.

  1. Assess the Impact Lenin Had On Russia and Its People Lenin was a great ...

    In the countryside, the peasants were very unwilling to sell their grain for money, as money had no value. Lenin was in a desperate need of food to feed the workers. So he ordered the Cheka to seize any surplus food.

  2. Lenin's Impact On Russia And The Russian People.

    The Black Market was introduced. It handled 60% of food transactions. Although it was illegal, this did not stop people. People were literally selling or exchanging anything they could to gain scraps or food or fuel. The final result of War Communism was the Revolt of Kronstadt, which led to the NEP.

  1. Assess the impact that Lenin had on Russia and the Russian people.

    Lenin had changed the way in which Russia was run, ruled and lived in for decades to come. This was a great victory for communism and Lenin's time in power had proved that communism could work. It was also apparent that these changes could not have been brought about without him.

  2. Lenin and the Bolshevik revolution.

    he sought to appeal to the specific demands of each of these three groups. Like the best party leaders in any multi-party system, Lenin was building a coalition of interest groups. These groups would provide his basis of support when the Bolsheviks made their grab for power in October.

  1. Free essay

    Was Stalin the most successful ruler of Russia in the period 1855-1956? Explain with ...

    Alexander II was assassinated, which shows poor power. Similarly, Nicholas II was abdicated, as he lost the support of the army. Later, however, he was murdered. The NEP was dissolved soon after it started as it was seen as unsuccessful. Khrushchev was removed from office as things proceeded to worsen.

  2. Why was Stalin able to establish his dictatorship in Russia?

    Fourteen men were executed, and further rivals were imprisoned on charges pertaining to his death, giving the undeniable impression that he was completely in charge. It is through this political opportunism that Stalin was able to cement his dictatorship, taking every opportunity to assert himself and meaning that he surpassed any serious opposition within a few years of Lenin?s death.

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