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GCSE: Russia, USSR 1905-1941

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  1. What happened to the Romanov family? - Study Sources A and B. Sources A and B give similar accounts. Does this mean they are reliable?

    Sources C, E, F, and H agree with Sources A and B on the matter that the murder of the Tsar took place in one of the lower story rooms of the Ipatiev House most probably in one of the rooms of the basement. We know this as Source C mentions, "the bloody carnage took place in one of the rooms in the basement", Source E states, " they were led downstairs where they were led into a room", Source F shows the "photograph of the basement room where the murders are claimed to have taken place" meanwhile Source H "shows the position of the people in the basement.

    • Word count: 7770
  2. Source based work on Impressions of Stalin?

    There are slight similarities in the two sources however. They both highlight Stalin as the important figure. He is at the centre of Source B, wearing white and so he stands out from the other workers. Similarly in Source A he is shown to be the responsible for the pyramids; he is the only person in the source therefore quite clearly in control. Both sources have the theme of new constructions. In A the monuments ironically symbolise death, while in B, the factories symbolise prosperity for Russia's industry.

    • Word count: 3871
  3. How did living conditions change in towns as a result of the Industrial Revolution ?

    The appalling conditions had not only taken place in home areas but were also present in factories which produced pollution and eventually contributed to the life threatening epidemics that broke out .The majority of the wealthy population were not drastically effected by the consequential changes since most of the occurrences took place in city areas whilst the affluent lived in larger spaces in rural districts . When one stares at the pros and cons of this matter, it can be seen that it would be rather difficult to draw out a full hearted decision as to whether or not the Industrial Revolution was either one of histories greatest disasters or upbringings .

    • Word count: 4683
  4. Did Stalin pervert the message of the "real communists?"

    Indeed, it was Marx's teachings that inspired Lenin to set up the first communist state to ever exist. Karl Marx, however, laid the foundations for a theoretical society, one which had never existed. He based these foundations upon scientific deductions and calculated predictions. As he was not writing about communism in one specific state or situation the 'rules' concerning both the acquisition of power and then the actual period of communist rule were left vague, open to interpretation. How long was this 'temporary' period of dictatorship?

    • Word count: 2960
  5. Why was revolution in Russia considered by many to be inevitable in the years before World War One?

    The Tsar thus retained complete power and authority over all areas of life, including the Orthodox Church. All major decisions were made in St. Petersburg, irrespective of the people's opinions or needs. By the turn of the century the people of Russia thus lived under a system based on class segregation and unjust distribution of wealth, a system in which Karl Marx declared revolution to be inevitable. Nicholas II, the last Tsar of Russia, was a man of weak character and little presence. A devoted father and husband, Nicholas II was certainly not up to the task of ruling over the largest nation in Europe.

    • Word count: 938
  6. Tsar Nicholas II, the last Romanov emperor of Russia in March 1917, was forced off of the throne.

    I do not believe that all the people, the Tsar, his family, and those with them, were shot there. It is my belief that the empress, the Tsar's son and the four other children were not shot in that house. I believe, however, that the Tsar, the family doctor, two servants and the maid were shot in the Ipatiev house. From a report in an American newspaper, December 1918. Judge Sergeyev, a supporter of the provisional Government, was appointed to investigate what had happened.

    • Word count: 1289
  7. Do you agree that it was the actions of the Army that destroyed the Tsardom in 1917?

    They also advised him while he was Commander in Chief in 1915, during World War One. In the rest of the army at the beginning of the war, Nicholas had a lot of support from the soldiers and many peasants were willing to serve in the army out of respect for him and because they were given powers and merits for fighting. As the war progressed there were great losses in the army. This weakened their morale and thus caused desertions though many army members still supported Nicholas after the February Revolution in 1917 and continued fighting.

    • Word count: 956
  8. "The Russo-Japanese war was the most important cause of the 1905 revolution" To what extent do you agree with this interpretation?

    It was also an aim for Russia to distract their population of poor living conditions and to increase the morale and opinions of the Army, which had been tainted from the Crimean War, as they believed that it would be a quick and easy victory. However, they were proved wrong and after a humiliating defeat the government's incompetence came to light and the revolutionary pressure was increased. Therefore, it can be seen that the war did aid the revolution to become visible and so was an important cause of the 1905 revolution.

    • Word count: 794
  9. The Causes of the Industrial Revolution 1750-1850.

    This meant that there was not enough space in the country for each family to have it's own plot of land and that people had to work for other people to earn a living. There was very little choice of employment and most people had to work in "Factories." Factories were one of the key elements of the industrial revolution. Instead of individual families working from home (which required skills) factories started employing large numbers of unskilled people to work there.

    • Word count: 1248
  10. What Happened To The Romanov Family?

    Source B is written by Sir Charles Eliot whom is on the 'White' side as he is British. Both sources are written by different people however they are both anti-Bolshevik and so their points of view could be biased. However, both sources are actually attained from Judge Sergeyev's findings. Sergeyev in his own right is not the most reliable source as his findings are known only from comments of people who spoke to him or read his report. This can be further examined by in Source A, Sergeyev continually uses the words 'supposed' and in some way or other the word believe; "my belief," "I do not believe" and "I believe" all figure in his comments.

    • Word count: 1753
  11. Why Did Tsar Nicholas Abdicate Following the 1917 Revolution but not the 1905 Revolution?

    Others who were lucky enough to be able to buy land often could not afford to buy enough they needed. Theses were still not allowed to come and go as they wanted however and the landowners still controlled them. Some were given tiny strips of land no where near big enough needed to be able to grow sufficient crops and make a decent wage. This type of farming had been going on for centuries and was very inefficient and the peasants thought it had to be modernised.

    • Word count: 3036
  12. Assess the impact that Stalin had on Russia and on the Russian people.

    If the worker worked well he got rewards. For example some workers in favorable conditions produced huge amounts. One of them was a coal-miner called Stakhanov, who dug 102 tonnes of coal in one shift - fourteen times the usual amount. Workers like him were made heroes, with special houses, cars and honours. Those who worked not as well as others were punished. For industrialization Stalin needed a lot of new workers. Peasants were encouraged to leave the villages and work in industry. Women were recruited in large numbers, before mostly men worked.

    • Word count: 780
  13. How Did The Tsar Survive The 1905 Revolution?

    The fact that the Tsar survived shows that this "Revolution" was not actually a revolution at all as the leader was still in control. This was due to a great many reasons. The Tsar made concessions to the people of Russia in a desperate attempt to calm the unrest that was building within the structure of his empire among all the classes bar the nobility. The nobility were not so much at unrest against the Tsar as they knew that without the Tsar in power they would loose the power they had over things such as the ownership of land and such things.

    • Word count: 1745
  14. "Despite his reputation as the 'Tsar Liberator', Alexander II had failed to satisfy the growing mood for change in Russia by the time of his assassination in 1881" Explain why you agree or disagree with this statement.

    One main sign that people are not dissatisfied is unrest, for instance in 1861 there were 499 incidents of serious rioting. 1861 was also the year that the Emancipation Edict was introduced. The fact that there were unexpected 'conditions' to the edict such as redemption payments and organisations such as the Mir, may have been one reason for unrest at this time. Tsar Alexander II had two main groups of opposition. These were The Moderates and The Extremists. The Moderates were influenced by western and Russian ideas.

    • Word count: 1533
  15. Was life improving for most Russian people before the outbreak of the First World War in 1914? Discuss.

    The people were not silenced though. In 1906 there were political assassinations, Peasant uprisings, protests and Stolypin's house was even bombed injuring two of his children. The Tsar created a reserve cabinet in case the present cabinet were all assassinated. The Tsar saw this widespread unrest and knew that if he didn't gain full absolute and autocratic power he would face another revolution. The Duma's were about as constitutional as the Tsar got and even then he ended up dissolving each one for different reasons.

    • Word count: 1003
  16. To what extent did the emancipation of the serfs in Russiain 1861 improve the lives of the serfs?

    Others considered it to be a limited and useless act and not worth the paper it was written on. In order to establish whether or not the emancipation of the serfs improved their lives or not, it is necessary to look at how their lives were before. Serfs worked for a landowner. They cultivated land allotted to them and in return for the use of this land they were required to work on the land reserved for the use of the landowner. In some cases the serfs worked so much on the landowners land, they had no time to work on their own land.

    • Word count: 1242
  17. In what sense did the policies of collectivization and industrialization constitute a second revolution in the Soviet Russia?

    The country's agriculture remained backwards and the plan saw the development of capitalist-like classes. The need arose for another solution and the push towards rapid industrialization began1. This was supported by the fact the Russia saw itself under military pressure and threat2, by the growing isolation from the west and need for self sufficiency, by the need to create a system that was not at the peasants' mercy3 and finally to preserve the socialist way, by terminating classes and developing the proletariat.

    • Word count: 3479
  18. Gladkov's Cement is a novel depicting post civil war Russia during 1921.

    Gleb, Mekhova and others viewed the NEP in the novel as an end to equality among workers, and a return to the capitalist system of Tsarist Russia. Gleb states in reference to the NEP, "... and that will be the end of your real work." (188) Gladkov states, "Reaction is powerless. And isn't the New Economic Policy reaction? Isn't it the restoration of capitalism?" (188) Clearly Gladkov believes that the NEP is a betrayal of the revolution and a return to capitalism.

    • Word count: 1124
  19. Victor Hugo gives us an epic tale of sacrifice and duty in his novel Ninety Three.

    "Cimourdain was a cause for horror." (Hugo, 236) That is how the people of France saw this former priest. Cimourdain was a man totally dedicated to the Republic. He viewed any sacrifice as acceptable, if it aided the Revolution. Even the death of his adopted son Gauvain was acceptable to him. Cimourdain in the novel represents the extreme of the Terror. While even Robespierre and Marat had occasional attacks of conscience, Cimourdain never does. Hugo uses his character to show the ferocity and immovability of the men of terror.

    • Word count: 808
  20. The fall of Tsarism in Russia.

    A majority of the Russian people are not afraid of what the Tsar could do to them if they commit crimes. This shows how outdated Tsarist Russia is and how out of touch the Tsar Nicholas II is because so many Russian citizens are willing to go to prison for their beliefs. At this time it is no secret that the lower classes such as the working class oppose autocracy and the Tsarist government. Tolstoy (the writer of this source)

    • Word count: 3447
  21. To what extent do the sources agree that Russian government policy on agriculture consistently failed and that peasants resisted it under both Tsarist and Communist rule?

    Individual peasants remained bound in various ways to their village communes. Some peasants did take advantage of emancipation to rise above and exploit this opportunity. These Kulaks as they became known would further prosper under Stolypin's reform as shown in S2. However for the bulk of the serfs peasants realised they were worse off than before. Their joy of becoming 'free' quickly turned into discontent. This idea of a good plan in theory but when put into practise was less popular was also seen in the virgin land scheme introduced under Communist rule. S4 shows that the plan was popular, as was at first the freeing of the serfs in S1.

    • Word count: 1001
  22. What were the strengths and weaknesses of the Russian monarchy in 1894?

    Alexander Alexandrovich Romanov, Tsar of Russia, died of Nephritis on October 20, at the summer palace in the Crimea. He was buried in the St. Peter & Paul Cathedral in St Petersburg, and was also the last Tsar to be buried there. Nicholas II was born on May 6, 1868, in Tsarskoe Selo. He was delivered by his mother Marie Fyodorovna Romanova, formerly Dagmar, Princess of Denmark. Unfortunately, Russia was changing fast. Nicholas grew up in a seriously 'mothered' approach, which including him maturing at a late age. Unlike the rest of the Romanov men, Nicholas was not a very big man.

    • Word count: 1031
  23. How and why did the Tsarist regime survive the 1905 revolution?

    One such party was the Social Democrats (1895), which followed the teachings of Marx, believing in a proletarian revolution. In 1903 the Social Democrats split into the Bolsheviks and Mensheviks. The Bolsheviks believing in a small well organised party that would act through direct action. The Bolsheviks believed that Russia was a special case in that the proletarian revolution could occur before the bourgeois (capitalist) revolution. On the other hand the Mensheviks believed in a large party that would continuously grow, and in the traditional Marxist view: that the proletarian revolution had to occur after the bourgeois revolution. Another party was the Social Revolutionaries, which believed that the peasants would bring about the revolution in Russia.

    • Word count: 1571
  24. Explain Rasputin's contribution to the collapse of Tsarism.

    He led an intriguing lifestyle, which was filled with women and alcohol. He was well known for being wild and always enjoying himself. He was thought of as a holy man, as he spent much of his time studying his religion. He found nature fascinating on his way to enlightenment, and is most famous for his apparent healing powers and power to predict the future. He did this by praying, and he often helped. The healing worked, and the predictions did come true on several occasions. As Rasputin seemed to be the only one who could treat Alexis, he became a very intimate friend to the Tsar and his family.

    • Word count: 1251
  25. How did the tsar survive the 1905 revolution?

    This meant many of the classes where wanting the Tsars regime to come to an end. Only the gentry, the people who supported industrialisation and the army supported the regime. Another problem the tsar caused was that it and his ministers believed that a victorious war would increase his popularity at home because it would give confidence to the people and would prove they were a successful regime they could trust. Because he thought this would improve his popularity he provoked Japan and eventually the rivalry over the control of Manchuria and Korea had become so intense that a war was unavoidable.

    • Word count: 1673

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