revision notes for russia

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The Dumas (1906-1914)
The fundamental law
March 1906 N2 issued the fundamental law of the Russian empire which broke some of the
promises he made in the October manifesto and reasserted his author
o The tsar had supreme autocratic power
o He could govern by issuing decrees
o The council of state would be set up ­ a parliamentary body made up of tsarist
o Laws proposed by the duma had to be approved by the CoS and N2 ­ reform seemed
o Gov ministers were appointed by the Tsar and only had to answer to him ­ not the Duma
The first duma
Consisted of
o Trudociks- represented the peasant and the workers
o Octobrists ­ moderate ­ loyal to tsar
o Progressives ­ new party made up of businessmen
o Kadets ­ supported by intellectuals and professionals
They had radical demands
o All adult males should have the vote
o Major land reforms should be introduced
o Political prisoners should be released
o Ministers should be answerable to the duma
N2 said no.
After 72 day = bye bye duma
N2 arrested the deputies and banned them from standing for election when they tried to stir up
Then there was duma#2 ( feb 1907-june 1907)
o Parties present
The number of kadets dropped
Seats gained by SR, Bolsheviks and Mensheviks
o What did they do?
Passed important land reform proposed by Stolypin
Existed in a state of almost constant uproar
Lasted only four months
Then came duma 3.0 (nov 1907-june 1912)
o Made up of
Conservatitive deputies as peasants lost the vote
Octobrists were the largest party
o What did they do?

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More right wing, so prepared to work with the government rather than
challenge it
Most proposals from the government were passed
Lasted over 4 years
Last but not least duma #4 (nov 1912-feb 1917)
o Made up of
Octobrists and other right wing parties
o What did they do?
Worked with the government until the outbreak of war in August 1914, but its
significance changed dramatically as the war progressed.…read more

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Stolypin ­ repression ad reform
Ruthless attitude to unrest
Used police and army to suppress unrest and keep a firm grip on people
1906 became prime minister. By then most revolutionary activity had been put down but there
were still disturbances in the country, and political assasinations were happening more often
Introduced a new court system where offenders were rapidly tried and sentenced.
By 1908 order had been restored, but Stolypin had made Tsarism even more unpopular
The Russian agricultural system was inefficient.…read more

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Few peasants could afford to separate from the mir and set up their own landholdings
o Only 25% had by 1914
o Stolypin hadn't addressed the problem that there was still millions of hectares owned
by the tsar and the nobility
o There was little change in farming tequineces
o And not much increase in farming output.
But maybe it wasn't ALL Stolypin fault.…read more

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Russia and the first would war.
The war highlighted the weaknesses in the government and society
Armed forces.
o Millions of men were conscripted into large armies.
o Enthusiasm for war was shattered by early defeats like Tanneberg and the Masurian
lakes in 1914
o Conditions were poorer with insuffiencent food supplies, lack of rifles and ammunition
o Military hospitals were often filthy and had insufficient medial supplies
o Military command structure was inefficient.…read more

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Political opposition
o 1914 most political parties supported the war effete and the duma was suspended
o 1915 failures in the war forced N" to recall duma ­ which repeated demands of first
o N2 rejected his and the duma parties united to form the progressive Bloc which
continued to press for changes in the running of the war
o 1915 --. Zemgor was formed to help with the war effort.…read more

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The February revolution 1917
Economic and social problems
Russian towns were over crowded with poor sanitation and water supplies
Famines was common and food supplies unreliable
Living condition for workers were cramped and unhealthy
Work hours were long with little pay
Heath and education were poor and created social inequalities
1914 industrial output was ranked 5th out of the five great powers.
HOWEVER ....…read more

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The February revolution took the SR's by surprise
They failed to seize control
Most leading Bolsheviks were aboard
Only influence they gave was the establishment of the Petrograd soviet, which shared power
with the PG…read more

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Dual power
The PG and the PS shared power
Provisional government
o Led by Prince Lvov
o Mainly made up of kadets and other liberals
o Alexander Kerensky was the of SR in the PG
o Had no lawful authority as not appointed or elected not what people wanted
o Announced it would govern until an elected government occurred
o First weeks it had popular support and authority was responded in larger cities.…read more

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Opposition to the Provisional Government
Conflicting attitudes towards war
Socialist parties
o Wanted defensive war
o Thought army shouldn't advance against enemy but prevent them advancing into Russia
Kadets and liberals
o Wanted to continue fighting
o Believed they had obligation towards allies
o Peace with Germany would mean loss of land and national humiliation
o Wanted a defensive war (until Lenin came back)
o Lenin demanded end to war
o Policy became popular between April and October 1917
April theses
A revolution to…read more


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