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What were the Causes of the October Revolution in Russia, 1917?

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Introduction

What were the Causes of the October Revolution in Russia, 1917? The main causes of the October Revolution was the failure of the Provisional Government and the strengths of the Bolshevicks, however this couldn't have caused the war on its own, so there were other causes. These causes were the role of the people as a mass and world war one. These factors helped the Bolshevicks gain support. During the war Russia were suffering heavy military defeats, especially in the battle of Tannennburg. Due to this mass loss of lives that the Russian army had suffered, Russia's position was in a very bad state and troops were deserting the army. The provisional government was failing to deal with the issues in Russia. Russia was too weak to carry on fighting in the war. The soldiers and peasants did not want the war to continue, but the Provisional Government kept the war going and was alienating these people, and therefore these groups weren't happy with the provisional Government and so they lost support from the troops. This meant that some were turning to the Bolshevicks. So here, the failure of the provisional government meant a loss of support from the troops. During the war, prices rose high because food and goods were becoming more and more scarce. ...read more.

Middle

The Role of the Bolshevicks (The opposition of the PG) was one of the other main factors to why there was a revolution. They had a very big part to play in the revolution. They had much strength as a party to gain support and revolt. They had the ability to recognise where their votes could come from and then channel their slogans etc. to these groups. They were able to win the peasants support with their slogan "Peace, bread and land". This was effective because during the war peasants were starving and had lost their land. They wanted the war to end so things could get back to normal and they could have things like bread and land. It was key to the Bolshevicks to gain the support of the peasants as they made up the majority of the population and had revolutionary potential. They could gain the support of the soldiers because they wanted peace and the provisional government kept the war going. The "Peace" part of their slogan obviously appealed to the soldiers because they wanted peace, and so a lot of soldiers supported the Bolshevicks because of this promise that was made. An issue, which greatly increased support for the Bolshevicks, was the fact that they were the only party who wanted to finish with the war, this increased support for their party because all the troops and most of the Russian public wanted the war to finish. ...read more.

Conclusion

The workers realised their aspirations tied in with the Bolshevicks ideas and so supported them. The soldiers wanted to the war to end, these turned to the Bolshevicks because they were the only party who also said they wanted to pull Russia out of the war. The peasants supported the Bolshevicks because they were also attracted to the Bolshevick ideas and aspirations. The Bolshevicks used a slogan "Peace, Bread and Land". This was effective because it appealed to the three major social groups and gradually led them to supporting the party. The people are of importance because the Bolshevicks needed their support and revolutionary potential to gain power in October. The strengths of the Bolshevicks and the failures of the provisional government combined was what caused the revolution. The Bolshevicks had the strength of Lenin and his strong character and the provisional government failed to deal with key problems like the war and the state of the economy. This led the people who were affected, to become radicalised and support the Bolshevicks who made them promises, which they wanted. However the effects of the war also contributed to the revolution because it was the war that caused the problems in the first place with the economy especially. The people were also important because it was them who the Bolshevicks needed to gain the support of, and when they did, another revolution was possible. Luke Sutherland, October Revolution essay, 03/05/07 ...read more.

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