Alexander III

  • Created by: niamh1250
  • Created on: 17-06-19 15:52
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  • Alexander III : Policies and and reforms
    • Background and beliefs
      • brought up with a very strong sense of commitment and sicerly believed that, with God'd direction, he alone could decide what was right for the country.
      • Believed that the duty of his subjects was not to question as they had with his father, but rather to just love and obey
      • He had watched his father die and was fearful of meeting the same fate. This influenced his early policies and reforms as they strayed away from what his father had tried to implenet - helpful change and reforms
    • Changes in local government
      • July 1889 - a new state appoitned "land-captai" was created with power to override elections to the zemstvo and village assemblies and to disregard zemstvo decisions
        • Land captains were made responsible for law enforcement and government in the countryside
          • They could ignore the normal judicial process
      • 1890 - act changed election arrangements for the zemstva with the aim of reducing the peasant's vote and to hold the group under the control of central government control
        • This made the group move away from political discussion and instead focus more on social services iincluding : eductaion, health, local transport and engineering projects
        • A similar act was passed for towns in June 1892
          • This reduced the electorate to those who owned property above a certain value
          • The mayor and members of the town council became state employees, subject to central government direction
    • Changes in policing
      • The number of police was increased and new branches of the criminal investigation department were set up
      • There was a drive to recruit spies, counter spies (to spy on the spies) and "agent provocateurs" who would pose as revolutionaries in order to incriminate others
      • The Okhrana was the secret police in charge of "security and investigation"
        • They intercepted and read mail, and checked up on activities in the factories, universities, the army and the state, detaining suspects and resorting to torture and execution
      • By the 1882 statute in Police Surveillance, any area of the Empire could be deemed an "area of subversion" and police agents could arrest, detain, question, imprison or exile not only those who committed a crime or knew, or were related to, people  who had committed crimes
        • this gave them tremendous power over people's lives, particularly since any such arrested person had no right to legal representation
    • Changes in the judicial system
      • Reversed Alexander II's  judicial reforms
      • 1885 decree - the minister of justice was given more control and power
        • They could dismiss judges andhold closed court sessions
      • 1887 decree made it harder to become jurors with high property and education
    • changes in education
      • 1884 - New university charter made the appointment of deans, professors etc subject to the approval of the Education Ministry based in "religious, moral and patriotic orientation" rather than academic grounds
      • Delyanov closed universities for women and abolished separate university courts
      • All university life was closely supervised, with students forbidden from gathering in groups of more than 5
      • Children from the lowest of classes were to be restricted to primary education which was controlled almost entirely by the orthodox church
      • Although the overall number of schools and the numbers of those receiving some education increased, only 21 % of the population was literate by the time of the first census in 1897
    • Changes in censorship
      • 1882 - Tolstoy issued supposedly "temporary regulations". these allowed newspapers to be closed down and a life ban on editors and publishers
      • Theatre art and culture was also censored with ideas of russification being enforced
    • Extent and impact of counter reform
      • Alexander III had effectively reversed the majority of his father's reforms
        • Not all of A II's reforms disappeared and there was some positive  change ie May 1881 saw the reducing of redemption payments and cancelled the arrears of ex serfs in the 37 provinces of the Empire


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