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GCSE: Russia, USSR 1905-1941

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  1. Stalins Five Year Plans were a great success 1928-1941. Do you agree? Explain you answer.

    The Dnieper Dam and Magnitogorsk are one of the remarkable achievements of the First Five Year Plan. The Second Five Year Plan (1933-1937) still prioritised heavy industry but it also concentrated on building communications especially railways, which became important to link cities and industrial centres. A major achievement was the Moscow Underground. The Second Plan also focused on chemicals, and lead, tin and zinc. The Third Five Year Plan (1938-1941) was interrupted by the outbreak of the Second World War, and was mainly focused around rearmament and weapon production to help with the war against Germany.

    • Word count: 1231
  2. The reasons behind the two revolutions in Russia in 1917

    Steel factory workers marched down the streets of Petrograd to express their discontentment. They numbered more than 20,000 by the end of the day. Workers from other factories also went on strike to support them. By the following day the number of protesting workers in the streets had quadrupled. Every following day the number of striking workers kept increasing dramatically. By Sunday the 11th of March the President of the Duma described the situation in Petrograd as anarchy. The Army confronted the people and workers in the streets and the soldiers opened fire on the crowd.

    • Word count: 791
  3. Were the mistakes made by the provisional government the main reasons why the Bolsheviks came to power?

    Furthermore over 150,000 soldiers deserted to claim land. This is a major reason why the provisional government lost power. However, another important reason the Bolsheviks came to power was the Kornilov revolt. Kerensky found out that Kornilov was marching his army to Petrograd because Kornilov thought martial law should be introduced. Kerensky armed the Red Guard to defend Petrograd in the end the Bolsheviks negotiated with Kornilov not to attack. Kerensky failed to take the weapons back off the Red Guard.

    • Word count: 465
  4. Doomed to failure from the start. How far do you agree with this assessment of the Provisional Governments chances in 1917?

    Furthermore, they developed an order, named number 1. Which indicated that the soldiers, sailors and workers would only work with the consent of the Petrograd Soviet and not take commands from the Provisional Government. This act limited the Governments actions and enabled lower class Russian citizens to have a say in matters. The arrival of Lenin meant that the Provisional Government was doomed to failure because they lost support. Lenin returned from Switzerland, with a new slogan; ?Peace, Bread, Land.? Everything Russian lower classes lacked.

    • Word count: 651
  5. Notes on "Why was Russia so difficult to govern?"

    Life was good . 8)The workers lived in cheap lodging houses and ate soup, black bread, cabbage and drank vodka. Often lived in barraks and disease was easily spread due to lack of hygiene. How was Russia governed in 1900? 1)Nicolas was the Tsar of Russia from 1894. He was an autocratic leader and thought of himself as gods chosen one. He was not elected. 2)Council of ministers who ran the government 3)Governing was painfully slow due to the vast size of the country 4)A lot of bribery and corruption 5)No parliament 6)Newspapers and books were censored 7)Opposition was not

    • Word count: 761
  6. Causes of the 1905 Russian revolution

    All these groups wanted change in Russia, something had to be done. One of the main causes of the revolution was the Russo-Japanese war. This war completely humiliated the Tsar because he thought that he could start a war with a weak nation, Japan and by winning, he could distract the people of Russia from the problems at home. Not only did it humiliate the Tsar it also caused shortage of resources in Russia.

    • Word count: 546
  7. The Outcome of the power struggle owes more to the weakness of Trotsky than the skill of Stalin. How far do you agree?

    It was Stalin?s manipulation skills and ability to make the best of Trotsky?s mistakes that catapulted him into power. Trotsky had a firm reputation for being lazy, arrogant and ignorant; a perception later confirmed when he failed to turn up to Lenin?s funeral. Although many argue that Trotsky was in the Crimea during the funeral and return in time, his absence, whatever the cause had severely negative impacts on his name. However, it was Stalin?s manipulation of Trotsky?s absence and the way he used it to his own advantage rather than Trotsky?s absence alone that led to Stalin?s substantial gain in popularity.

    • Word count: 806
  8. How far by 1941, had the Soviet economy benefited from changes in agricultural policy since 1928?

    Source A is very positive but it is not that useful as the fact that he is a left wing American shows that he is communist and biast. He is also American so when he came to visit Russia he was only shown the decent collective farms. What is not shown in this source is that the grain harvests had dropped dramatically in the early 1930s when grain was most needed and in 1928 there was a 2 million ton shortfall in grains purchased by the state. Stalin claimed the grain had been produced but was being hoarded by "kulaks."

    • Word count: 1337
  9. Stalin's Russia

    That?s why he felt that there was an urgent need to build up the country?s supplies. According to Stalin, there had to be more workers working in the factories than in the farms so industrialization can take place quicker, however he also realized that there had to be plenty of food production to feed the workforce.

    • Word count: 450
  10. How significant a figure in the revolution of 1917 Russia was Lenin?

    ?Iskra ? the spark? and ?Pravda ? the truth? may have partially helped influence the soldiers in deserting (if they were reading it of course). Lenin?s ideas may have also influenced the people in Russia slightly with its anti-tsarist ideas and the idea that the war was imperialist and caused by the capitalist?s to gain power over the people and make money. These ideas probably stirred around the cities and gave extra solidity and foundation for people?s argument to turn against the Tsar.

    • Word count: 1951
  11. Lenin's Importance in the 1917 Revolutions.

    In 1900, he founded the Iskra, an underground newspaper published in Germany, to organise a Russian Marxist Party. As Lenin said, ?A newspaper is not only a collective propagandist and a collective agitator; it is also a collective organiser.? Unlike Trotsky who favoured ?well-organised violence? as the ?shortest distance between two points?, Lenin used such method of propaganda of written texts and messages without any physical violence to convey the Bolshevik set of mind to the people. Lenin said, ?Crowds are in a state of expectant attention which renders suggestion easy.? This is why Lenin?s genuine talent as a great public speaker and propagandist in manipulating crowds was crucial in holding the Bolshevik Party together and sustaining consistent support.

    • Word count: 2137
  12. What methods did Stalin use to control the Soviet Union?

    Political youth groups were also introduced to train children in socialism along with various activities such as sports and camps. This ultimately gave Stalin control over the young generation of the Soviet Union, as they were lead to believe in what was taught to them. Another method that was carried out was based around the arts and the sciences. Writers and artists were regarded dangerous to Stalin and so they were forced to produce work that suited Stalin and the soviet workers.

    • Word count: 917
  13. How far were things improving in Russia before the First World War?

    A sharp increase in the production of food was also a great improvement to Russian industry and made food more widely available to the vast Russian population. The production of grain more than doubled in 1913 since 1890. In 1890 an average of 38 million tonnes of grain were produced per year. In the year of 1913 alone, Russia was able produce a gigantic 90 million tonnes of grain. Although the figures of the improvement in the amount of food produced in Russia were very promising, this still could not successfully quell the ever growing problem of poverty in Russia.

    • Word count: 2287
  14. What was bloody Sunday? Did the Czar learn from the 1905 Revolution?

    The main reason lie in the early 1900?s, a time period where economic problems and conflicts between Japan had sprung. Plans of boosting Russia?s economy had affected all of its people and so when the development of agriculture and industry had begun, many more of peasants and workingmen started to revolt due to heavy taxes. In 1904, Russia had involved itself in a conflict against Japan, which ultimately made the situation worse for everyone. The war had made prices of goods increase in the cities and there was a shortage of industrial materials.

    • Word count: 931
  15. How far was the First World War the main cause of the fall of the Romanovs in February 1917?

    Matters on the front line were looking very bleak, by Christmas 1916 1.6 million Russian soldiers were dead, 3.6 million were wounded and a further 2.4 million were taken as prisoners. However, not only the front line was looking dismal but back in Russia, Nicholas II?s wife Alexandra and the devious monk Rasputin were left to govern the gargantuan country. Alexandra often sent word to Nicholas, advising him on policies, transport and communication, but even herself admitted it all ?made her head spin?.

    • Word count: 1478
  16. Russian October 1917 Revolution - When, what, who, why, how and where.

    Who The chains of events were triggered by one man called Lenin whose role in the February Revolution must be studied first. Looking back at the aftermath of the previous revolution in February, with Tsar Nicholas II being overthrown by the people and the military, a provisional government was formed by the leading members of Tsar?s parliamentary body called Duma which was led by Kerensky until further election can be held.

    • Word count: 415
  17. Stalin was able to obtain total power in the USSR by the end of the 1920s because of his cunning and ruthlessness. Do you agree?

    Yet Stalin only succeeded in this event because of the power and the responsibility his job had given him and Trotsky?s character, for Trotsky had always been over-confident in himself and assumed that everyone would just accept him as the leader and so never regarded Stalin as his rival. If he had regarded Stalin as a rival, he wouldn?t have trusted him totally on the date of Lenin?s funeral, therefore he had to bear some responsibility for himself too. If only Trotsky was more aware of Stalin?s cunning and ambition, he would have confirmed that date of the funeral with other Party members and go back to Petrograd a few days before Lenin?s funeral even though he was sick.

    • Word count: 2808
  18. Why did Stalin, not Trotsky, emerge as Lenins successor?

    Unlike Stalin, Trotsky was heavily distrusted, especially by older Party members because they had feared that he might become a dictator, especially since the Red Army was loyal to him. Even though Trotsky seemed the most likely candidate to become the new leader, his loyalty was also heavily doubted because he had originally been a member of the Menshevik Party until 1917. Another reason why Trotsky had failed to defeat Stalin was basically because he underestimated his opponent?s powers. Trotsky did not feel threatened by Stalin nor ever felt he could become Party leader.

    • Word count: 795
  19. War Communism and the NEP

    In 1921, Lenin decided to introduce the New Economic Policy, or the NEP, for two reasons. Firstly, War Communism was starting to become ineffective and in 1921, there was a great famine because peasants stopped growing more grain than they needed. Secondly, the Kronstadt Rebellion scared Lenin and the Communist party into believing that Russia needed a new economic system. In March 1921, the Kronstadt sailors mutinied and Trotsky delt with quickly, killing thousands of soldiers. This wouldn?t have been to important, except that The Kronstadt sailors had been good supporters of The Bolsheviks during the Revolutions of 1917.

    • Word count: 447
  20. Write a letter to Czar Nicholas II reporting on the state of Russia

    I find it appalling that there is no basic education in Russia and most peasants 1cannot read or write making it very hard for them to get decent work. This forces them and leaves them no choice but to work within the farming industry, they have very little space and still use ancient farming techniques to survive. For those peasants who are fortunate enough to get work in factories the brutal discipline and safety for these workers is diabolical.

    • Word count: 577
  21. Account for the Political Situation in Russia on the eve of the 1905 Revolution.

    Like his father before him he ruled under the conservative Autocratic rule. However unlike his father, Tsar Nicholas was ill-prepared to be Tsar and payed little attention to the political and social status?s of Russia. This was the main reason of Russia's Backwardness compared to the modernized, democratic Europe in the 19th Century. Tsar Nicholas with the help of his mentor Pobedonostev, focused on a Conservative Empire where the Tsar had all power. However he found the Russian Empire hard to control as it was a huge land mass and was very multicultural - the main religions being: Russian Orthodox, Roman Catholic and Islamic.

    • Word count: 545
  22. Analyse how far WW1 caused the Russian Revolution.

    (Ben Walsh 98) Nicholas proved himself incapable of leading; he tended to avoid making important decisions and insisted in the tiniest of details of government. Nicholas was also incapable of choosing officials, sacking many potentially good ones and replacing them with his friends whom were often corrupt and incompetent. (Ben Walsh 102) Many peasants went into the cities to find jobs in the industries. However with terrible working conditions, the peasants were starting to get unhappy. The unhappiness resulted in the Bloody Sunday where Father Gapon led a crowd to give a peaceful petition to the Tsar, but ended up getting killed or injured.

    • Word count: 1895

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