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

Which of the following views best explain the fall of Tsarism of Russia? (I) Autocracy is an outdated form of government not suited to twentieth century Russia. By Count Leo Tolstoy. (II) Without war Tsarist Russia would have survived and pr

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

History Coursework: Tsarism in Russia TASK 1: Which of the following views best explain the fall of Tsarism of Russia? (I) "Autocracy is an outdated form of government not suited to twentieth century Russia." By Count Leo Tolstoy. (II) "Without war Tsarist Russia would have survived and prospered." By V.N.Kokovstov. Nicholas II ruled from 1894 until his abdication on 15 March 1917. His reign saw Imperial Russia go from being one of the foremost great powers of the world to an economic and military disaster. The February Revolution was the first of two revolutions in Russia in 1917 and its immediate result was the abdication of Tsar Nicholas II and the collapse of the Romanov dynasty. The quotes stated above represent two arguments; one which believes that the fall of Tsarism was because of the Autocratic system and the other which believes that War was the catalyst which caused the fall of Tsarism. Tolstoy's argument can be supported by several sources which highlight the Tsar and his system's weaknesses. However, there are also various sources which back Kokovstov's view which display the complications the war caused and suggest that perhaps Russia would have prospered if it wasn't for the war which highlighted Tsarism's flaws and intensified problems as far as Tsarism's weakness were concerned. ...read more.

Middle

This demonstrates that Modernisation had failed and that Russia had lost faith in the Tsar. The Tsar's manifesto was in such shambles that even the leader of the Octobrist party and former supporter of the Tsar, had lost faith in him and his promises. It is from the year 1913 which was before the war and even then the "painless transition from the old condemned system had failed" which suggests that despite there being no war Russia's system was still failing and autocracy still remained. This source supports Tolstoy but also contradicts Kokovstov's argument because it suggests that Russia still had problems before the war due to the Tsarist system and that the pressure of war simply made it worse. This source can be linked to source 5 as it suggests that the transition to a new order failed which means that the Tsar's autocracy still dominated. This is similar to source 5 as the ideas of the October Manifesto were cancelled out by the Fundamental Laws therefore keeping autocracy as well. Overall I think Source 6 is reliable because it is a comment made by a leading figure in the Duma who actually admits the failure of his party. However, it can also be seen as being unreliable because Guchkov may simply be trying to put the Tsar down in order to gain power himself as he was already the chairman of the Duma(the parliament of Russia) ...read more.

Conclusion

This source links to source 12 because it also shows strong feelings of hostility towards the government as the soldiers are shown to be rebelling in Source 12. Conversely, source 11 and 12 could be interpreted to show that war highlighted only Russia's weaknesses. Source 11 is reliable as it is an extract directly from an Okhrana file. The Okhrana were able to get a first hand experience of the situation in the Russia and in particular the army. In conclusion I feel that Tolstoy's view is correct despite there being signs that Russia was modernising. There were signs of economic growth and improving living conditions. Nonetheless, the Tsar's selfishness negated the country's political solidity. In contrast to this I think if the Tsar had been willing to share his power, Russia would have continued to grow and prosper in spite of the war. It is difficult to say whether the war was the main reason for the fall of Tsarism however it was simply another hurdle which the Tsar couldn't handle. Source 1 showed that all the classes were openly hostile due to the autocratic system which according to Tolstoy was "hopelessly outdated" therefore supporting his point that it was not suited to 20th century Russia. Overall I feel that because of the war Russia's problems were intensified however they existed before it due to the failing autocratic system. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Russia, USSR 1905-1941 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 GCSE Russia, USSR 1905-1941 essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Was Nicholas II Responsible for His Own Downfall? What can you learn from ...

    4 star(s)

    The Tsar's quick move into war had left many vacancies in jobs in many of the important industries; many farmers had been taken away to fight previous to 1917. In Source B, Mikhail Rodzianko comments how the soldiers were not soldiers but peasants taken from the fields.

  2. How convincing is the argument that WW1 was the main factor in the collapse ...

    The accumulation of pre-war grievances and the appalling conditions caused by the war led the Russian masses to protest and riot. The regime was too weak and incompetent to deal with the huge problems Russia faced and failed to see the urgency of the situation.

  1. The fall of Tsarism in Russia.

    Tolstoy (the writer of this source) used the fact that he was a part of the upper class to his advantage. He was able to speak openly because he himself was an aristocrat. Source C is biased because it was written by Tolstoy, the man who states the first argument. "Autocracy is an outdated form of..."

  2. Why did the Tsarist regime fall in 1917?

    then it would not be unreasonable to suggest that the camera could simply be brought closer and closer to the men, until they filled the entire picture. They may have wanted to do this for several reasons. Mainly, they could have shown this picture to the Tsar (via newspapers)

  1. Explain Rasputin's contribution to the collapse of Tsarism.

    He also did not have much experience in running an entire army full of poor soldiers. The worst problem about taking charge was that he had to leave Russia. He was bad enough at ruling it, so when he left his wife in charge, Russia was destined to fall.

  2. To what extent was the Revolution of February/march, in Russia 1917, due to the ...

    This had the opposite effect as not only did it increase the strains on Russian economy and create food shortages, but Russia ended up suffering a humiliating defeat against Japan with a high number of deaths and casualties amongst the Russian solders, which only created further enmity towards the government.

  1. 'THE TSARIST REGIME WAS SECURE BY 1905'

    The Orthodox Church supported absolute authority, it was an conservative body, opposed to political change, and committed themselves to the preservation of the tsarist system. It was their spiritual authority to teach the Russian people that it was their duty to be totally obedient.

  2. Why there were two Revolutions in Russia in 1917.

    This formed a dual power between the Petrograd Soviets and the provisional government. The lack of co-operation between these two 'powers' was one of the weaknesses of the provisional government. The provisional government tended to support the middle classed Russians, not the poor peasants.

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