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What Was Particular to the Timing of the Russian Revolution of Fe...

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What Was Particular to the Timing of the Russian Revolution of February/March 1917?

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  • September 2008
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“What was particular to the timing of the Russian revolution of February/March 1917?”

The Russian revolution of February/March 1917 changed the course of history. It abolished a ruling system centuries of years old and destroyed its social hierarchy. Through a combination of historical events the revolution appeared enviable. The peasants were brutally oppressed; the image of autocracy in their eyes had been undermined. The ruling tsar that comes to power is incapable of instigating change despite its dire need. Furthermore a civil uprising in 1905 had been mishandled by the tsar, resulting in bloodshed and resentment from the people. Meanwhile the casualties arising First World War was taking a heavy toll on the tsar’s reputation. All of these events contributed to the rise of the civilians and the revolution.

Russia changed in many ways under the rule of Alexander II. It was during his reign the seeds of revolution were planted. Alex II had foreseen the need for change in Russian society including a lessening the iron rule of the Tsar. In 1861 after several years of contemplation the decision was made to free the surfs from their masters. However in spite of this “freedom” the surfs were never actually independent, rather they were overwhelmed with debts that could never be repaid for attempting to build their own establishment. The attempt for liberation proved to be ineffective and the peasants were still economically tied to the land. The peasants felt cheated of true liberation and although they continued to follow the Tsar’s rule they had been shown that it was not an absolute one, this created a desire for effective change to the state of presents in Russian society. The freedom of the surfs also brought with it new class division, some former surfs were able to rise above poverty. This group were named ‘kulaks’ or more appropriately ‘eater of the Mir’ as they appallingly abused their power over the commune of peasants. Furthermore the Tsars...

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