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GCSE: Russia, USSR 1905-1941

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  • Marked by Teachers essays 6
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  1. Marked by a teacher

    Was Nicholas II Responsible for His Own Downfall? What can you learn from Source A about the situation in February 1917?

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    Source B is a lot more reliable than Source A as it agrees with what we know as the truth. It talks about the soldiers going on strike, which is true because they refused to fire upon the demonstrators who were most likely their friends and neighbours, as most of the soldiers were peasants. It also agrees with the timescale as the soldiers went on strike the day before. Source B also shows us four phrases, which the demonstrators were supposedly shouting out, these were: 'Land and Freedom' 'Down with the Dynasty' 'Down with the Romanovs' 'Down with the Officers' This would be true as these four things were what the peasants wanted.

    • Word count: 3411
  2. How important was Stalin compared to Lenin in creating the Soviet Union?

    commenting that the Bolsheviks, including Stalin, "had been willing to work with the other reformist parties". Lenin was prepared to make a stand, as is shown in a letter sent by him to the Petrograd and Moscow committees of the Bolshevik party in September of 1917, detailing one of his main reasons as; Bolsheviks "can and must take power into their own hands". Trotsky later commented that if neither Lenin nor he had been present, "there would have been no October revolution". These sources demonstrate that Lenin was prepared to overthrow the democratic assembly to gain power.

    • Word count: 3475
  3. Stalin and Lenin

    Both Lenin and Stalin were extremely passionate about the Marxist idea and they both loved using brutal method to remain in control, Stalin used it to eliminate all of the opposition and the authorities who he suspected to be spies while Lenin used it to gain control of Russia. Lenin was arrogant about his intellectual knowledge but even after all the propaganda reports where stripped away from him after his death he was revealed to be a modest hard working person who worked 16 hours a day and read an extensive amount of books which from he managed to get

    • Word count: 3728
  4. The Policies of Joseph Stalin 1928 1953

    Many workers died in the horrible conditions whilst working on projects also there were a huge number of deaths as a result of industrial accidents. Workers were subject to strict discipline and were accused of wrecking the Soviet economy if their goods were not of a good quality. Absenteeism was punished with fines and some workers were fired. The fact Stalin is standing out and is being portrayed as a God confirms that the photograph is another piece of propaganda that Stalin used to manipulate people's views of him.

    • Word count: 4348
  5. Stalin man or monster

    The first policy was collectivisation. This took place when Peasants were to put their lands together to form large joint farms called Kolkhoz but could keep small plots for personal use. Animals and tools were to be pooled together ninety percent of the kolkhoz produce and would be sold to the state and profits shared out. The remaining ten percent was used to feed the kolkhoz. The government had tried to sell these ideas to the peasants offering free seeds and other perks however complications erupted soon.

    • Word count: 8424
  6. Lenin's Role in History

    His speeches excited the people, which was significant to the Revolution as everyone was ready for action. Lenin's message of 'Peace, Bread and Land' was just what the people of Russia wanted. The precise roles of Lenin and Trotsky in the October Revolution have been debated and the subject of considerable propaganda. The facts, however, are clear. It was Trotsky who proposed the organisation of a Military Revolutionary Committee from the Petrograd Soviet, and it was this committee which organized and led the coup d'etat which seized control of the Winter Palace and other key points in the capital.

    • Word count: 3101
  7. Tsar's Russia & revolution, Hitler's rise to power revison notes.

    The war speeded up the process of change. People had had enough. Revolutions of 1917 Reasons for Revolutions: * Economic chaos, people were starving and women started protesting for food which led to riots * Trains were being used for military purposed instead of agriculture purposes * The war had caused 9 million deaths and many blamed the Tsar because he was leading the army * The troops turned against the Tsar orders and joined the rioters The Petrograd soviet was set up to co-ordinate protests. The Duma realised that the government was failing so they set up a provisional government. The provisional government forced the Tsar to leave the throne (abdicate)

    • Word count: 3823
  8. These three sources do not all give the same impression of Stalin. Source A is definitely not conveying a good image of Stalin, but sources B and C are.

    In the picture, Stalin is also holding a pipe, which suggests that he's relaxed. This propaganda was made by Stalin and it is obviously is not against Stalin. Behind are the new power stations, which were made because of Stalin. This source was obviously made so that the public would see Stalin as a good, kind man who does good things for his country. Source C shows women reaching up to Stalin and shaking his hand. The women are smiling and look happy.

    • Word count: 5297
  9. Stalin Man or Monster

    Source A and source B are similar as they both highlight Stalin's achievements in the first 5 year plan. The 5 year plan was introduced by Stalin to improve Russia's industries; he believed that it was a matter of life or death. Source A shows one outcome of the 5 year plan which was Stalin murdering his own people. Stalin didn't physically murder his own people, but as a result of his plan in 4 years an estimated 127,000 workers died.

    • Word count: 6861
  10. Source related questions on Joseph Stalin

    Finally, there is a caption to the cartoon at the bottom of the picture in the centre. I know that Stalin is the man in the picture as the moustache symbolises him. To add to that, Stalin has got a hunch back and a deformity. The deformity is shown physically, but is referring to Stalin's mental deformity. The mental deformity is not Stalins mind, but the way his policies worked in Russia. Stalin's hunch back resembles the hunch back of Richard III. Richard III was a very evil man, and I believe that the reason David Lowe drew Stalin with a hunch was because he wanted people to think Stalin was an evil man.

    • Word count: 6498
  11. Assess the Impact Stalin Had On Russia and Its People Stalin came to power in the year 1938 and when he did, he realized that communist Russia

    This large farm would then have a committee of peasants who would run it. The objectives of collectivisation were: ? To increase agricultural production ? To encourage more modern methods of agriculture and machinery ? To raise money for industrialisation Though, the Russian peasants, who were about 80% of Russia's population, were against the policy of collectivisation, as it did not benefit the peasants. It stopped the peasants from being allowed to sell their surplus production for profit. Instead, their surplus production would be collected by the government in the form of tax. Therefore collectivisation was against the interests of the peasants.

    • Word count: 4074
  12. To what extent was Stalin's economic policy successful? In the 1920's the soviet economy was failing disastrously the revolution and the civil war had devastated the soviet economy and the economic output

    Indeed the series of pictures "The First tractor" supports this. These series of pictures were paintings in the style of social realism that portray the beginning of collectivisation. So these pictures are highly speculative and they are obviously blatant propaganda. However there were some tractors going out to the countryside. This propaganda shows joyous scenes with smiles on people's faces and cares nothing for the genuine human effects show in photos at the time. There isn't an exact date as much of their production was covered but it does appear to have been produced at some point around the 1930's in the height of collectivisation.

    • Word count: 3897
  13. How Successful Were Stalin's Policies During His Leadership of the Soviet Union?

    The intentional creation of peasant famine in Ukraine in 1932-33 though forced grain acqusition and collectivisation also eliminated millions of Russian's which had helped maintain the economy. Another limitation of Stalin's rule was his numerous military errors such his purge of the Soviet officer corps which resulted in the intellectual decapitation of the armed forces and his disbelief in a German attack in 1941. A large proportion of the Soviet Union's 26-27 million war dead may well have perished due to Stalin's ineptitude.

    • Word count: 3639
  14. Why was the Bolshevik revolution of 1917 successful

    These are Karl Marx's views and how they could be achieved. Vladimir Ilch Ulyanov, also known as Lenin which was a secret codename he had adapted so he could not be caught by the government on plots to overthrow them, was brought up in a well educated middle class home and he was the third out of six children. He left school first in his class and looked to become a scholar. He looked set to become a well educated and mature young man at the age of sixteen but things were soon to change.

    • Word count: 3499
  15. How and why did the Bolsheviks seize power in 1917?

    If Nicholas had been more responsible, and taken advice from an elected cabinet, things could have been different, but this was not the case. The Tsar's indecisive ways meant that when situations occurred, they lasted for dramatic lengths of time or did immense damage. The poor economic and social conditions are prime examples of this, and are also a great factor in how the Bolsheviks managed to seize power. Russia's population had increased by 50% from 1860 to 1897. Land was in short supply and much of it was unsuitable for farming anyway.

    • Word count: 3950
  16. How valid is the view that the reign of Alexander II achieved nothing of significance for Russia?

    It was clear that reform was urgent and after the despotic reign of his father, Nicholas I, Alexander ascended in a national sense of change and hope of reform. One of the most crucial reforms of his reign was the emancipation of the serfs. Not only for moral reasons, but it was agreed that the policy on serfdom needed reform since it prevented the growth of Russian industry, obstructed the free flow of labour and restricted enterprise. It took some bargaining between the gentry who sort to keep serfdom and the reformer/modernizers who wanted its abolition but the Great Emancipation

    • Word count: 3148
  17. 'The Soviet Sate was established at the expense of the Soviet people' Examine the nature of the policies adopted towards agriculture and heavy industry between 1928 and 1939 in light of this statement.

    They also lost their ration cards which made it very difficult for them to buy food. Under the Five Year Plan good workers who kept up their production rates received high salaries, but for, many people the targets were just too high. In 1929 the government said that factories would open seven days a week and workers would take their days off by rotation. Many workers began to find factory work too demanding and left to work somewhere else. In 1932 the government introduced internal passports. Workers could not move from one town to another without permission.

    • Word count: 3114
  18. How did Stalin control Russia from 1924-1953?

    Stalin had Kamenev and Zinoviev admit to joining Leon Trotsky, in order to remove Stalin from power, and murdering Kirov. Even though all this was a lie, Stalin had them physically and psychologically tortured daily, and drugged so that they would admit to anything. When they did admit, it was all over Russia. Citizens felt let down by the senior members, all except Stalin. They believed that he was the only trustworthy important member of the party, as it was him who had exposed Kamenev and Zinoviev as the "traitors" everyone believed they were.

    • Word count: 3406
  19. Why did the Tsarist regime fall in 1917?

    The cartoonist shows that the peasants and workers must suffer to sustain the happiness of those higher up. This is depicted by showing the lower class (peasants and workers) suffering, and even dying at the bottom of the pyramid, whilst everyone above lives happily. You can see that the people above are living happily by looking at the cartoon - the capitalists are eating and laughing, whilst the church, and aristocrats sit around exercising their power - they are not doing any work. No one is looking down towards the lower class, to show that they do not care about them, and may not even acknowledge their existence - this shows that the workers did not get any credit for their hard work, and is very unfair.

    • Word count: 5230
  20. China 1945-90 - source based questions.

    The Chinese writing is about the progress will makes the country go forward. This propaganda portrays Mao's message and his intention of the Cultural Revolution or to regain his power in China. 3. Study source C. Do you think this is a reliable account of the activities of the Red Guards? The extract from source C is from an eyewitness or a primary account. The actions of the Red Guards were obviously unfair and threatening. Although these movements are 'a revolutionary action' they should have not beaten Lian Shan.

    • Word count: 6473
  21. "To what extent was World War One the main reason for the downfall of Tsarism?"

    I do however think that generally most of the people supporting the revolution in Russia at the time aimed simply to remove the current Tsar and not Tsarism totally. Even before the war broke out Tsarism was failing both economically and politically. Alan Wood presents the Marxist view that "the seeds of the Revolution were set in the soil of the unsatisfactory legislation which abolished serfdom in Russia in 1861"3. Marxists have this opinion because abolishing serfdom greatly disadvantaged the working class and poorer people in Russia.

    • Word count: 3439
  22. 'The Five Year Plans brought glory to Stalin and misery to his people.' How valid is this judgement?

    He launched these Five Year Plans for a number of reasons. One of the reasons why Stalin launched the Five Year Plans and why he wanted to industrialise Russia was to increase military strength. Stalin knew that if a country wasn't industrialised it would be a weak country therefore he had a fear of foreign invasion. Russia in the 1920's was a backward country compared to other countries such as France, Britain, US and Japan. Stalin knew that countries such as France who were producing more coal and steel and thus if there was an attack on Russia from the leading powers, Russia would need a much more powerful industrial base to manufacture the huge quantities of weapons and munitions needed to fight a war.

    • Word count: 7629
  23. How successful were Stalin's economic policies in the 1920s and 30s?

    Stalin made electricity when he made dams in the river Dnieper to create HEP (as well as other places). In Stalin's first five-year plan the idea was to increase production and set a base for the next five years. In the first four years (the plan only took four years to complete) electricity production was nearly tripled, coal nearly doubled, as did oil and Pig Iron whilst steel production increased by fifty percent. However none of these mainstream resources actually hit the targets which were set (with the exception of oil which exceeded its target by 2.4 million tons).

    • Word count: 3263
  24. 'The Five Year Plans brought glory to Stalin and misery to his people' - How valid is this judgement?

    but not to the extent of what it could have been had the country been more organised in the industrial targets which it aimed to achieve. Moreover, the break out of the Russian Revolution and previously World War I had already caused enough damage to the mere Russian industries which resulted in the disorganisation of the transport distribution of the meagre goods produced. Additionally, it was producing fewer industrial goods to many countries that were a lot smaller than her.

    • Word count: 6099
  25. What Happened To The Romanov Family?

    They only wished to find out the truth and not to gain support of the Germans. Sergeyev was a socialist revolutionary whom were the white army and of which were supported by the provisional government who were against the reds. This suggests that his examines and investigations are likely to be biased. 2. They both agree that only five members of the royal family were killed: sources A and B suggest that only five members of the Romanov family we killed.

    • Word count: 3822

Conclusion analysis

Good conclusions usually refer back to the question or title and address it directly - for example by using key words from the title.
How well do you think these conclusions address the title or question? Answering these questions should help you find out.

  1. Do they use key words from the title or question?
  2. Do they answer the question directly?
  3. Can you work out the question or title just by reading the conclusion?
  • To what extent have revolutionary Socialists followed the teachings and doctrines of Marx?

    "In conclusion, no socialist revolutionary faithfully followed the communist manifesto and Marx's ideology because it is almost impossible to implement an ideology written half a century ago under totally different conditions and a totally different situation. Every revolutionary had a their own adaptation of Marxism, this is evident with all the varying 'isms' developed out of Marxism like Trotskyism, Leninism, Stalinism and Maoism."

  • To what extent was Stalin's economic policy successful? In the 1920's the soviet economy was failing disastrously the revolution and the civil war had devastated the soviet economy and the economic output

    "Stalin's right hand man Khrushchev backs the argument of collectivisation as a failure. Khrushchev states: 'Stalin's brand of collectivisation brought nothing but brutality and misery'. This source is a quote from Khrushchev after Stalin's death. This is a source of good utility and reliability as it is said by Khrushchev after Stalin's death when he was in power so he could say what he wanted to, secondly Khrushchev was Stalin's right hand man so he was present around the time of collectivisation and would probably have know as much as Stalin. This source has a good level of validity because it is on collectivisation and what Khrushchev believed it achieved. It is trustworthy as it is a direct quote from Khrushchev himself. The motives of this source can be slightly questioned. As it is post Stalin, when Khrushchev encouraged openness on Stalin, plus he criticised and distanced himself from him. So it might have been said by Khrushchev to enhance his popularity and show him as less of a tyrant than Stalin was. This source shows a view of collectivisation agreed on by a great many people in the Soviet Union and it is also the view of historians. Figures do not support any success in collectivisation theses figures taken from a history learning site from the UK:"

  • Assess the strengths & weakness of Russia around 1855

    "In conclusion, when Alexander II came to the throne in 1855 he faced many problems, the most drastic I think was the existing serfdom system. Alexander decided to resolve these problems b introducing new reforms, the most famous and most needed in my opinion is the abolishment of serfdom. But as actual abolishment was after 1855, Russia's serfdom community was still very much alive consequently was still a huge weakness, and illustrated their backwardness in 1855. So overall after weighing up the strengths and weakness of Russia at that time, I would definitely consider there to be more weakness in the Russian empire. I do acknowledge that Alexander II employed some key reforms; however Russia remained 50 - 100 years behind the west in sheer development of the country in 1855."

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