Tsarist Russia 1855-1917 Historical Interpretations

Compilation of Tsarist Russia AQA Historical Interpretations

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Historical Interpretations
Tsarist Russia
Reform and reaction, 1855-1881
`The Tsar Reformer' ­ Alexander II
W.E. Moss-"Alexander proved himself not only a disappointing `liberal' but an indifferent autocrat"
Orlando Figes - "The Emancipation came as a rude shock not only to the economy but also to the whole of the
gentry"
Carl Watts-"Significant though the reforms of Alexander II were, they failed to create popular support for the Tsarist regime"
Hopes betrayed; reaction and opposition
Richard Pipes-"The terrorists could not have been more effective in scuttling political reform had they been on the police
payroll"
Orlando Figes-"[The Opposition] soon degenerated ­ as all terror does ­ into violence for violence's sake"
Political reaction: social and economic change, 1881-1904
The Russian economy, 1881-1904
M Lynch-"[Witte] believed that the modernization of the Russian economy ultimately depended on developing an effective
railway system"
T.A. Morris-"The ultimate aim of his policies was the salvation of Russia" (Witte)
G Darby-"He abandoned liberal economics for direct state intervention" (Witte)
The growth of opposition, 1881-1904
Orlando Figes-"[Alexander III] commanded his ministers like a general at war"
Russia in revolution, 1904-1906
The Russo-Japanese War and the impact of the 1905 revolution
Bernard Pares-"Russia had half a constitution"
Orlando Figes-"1905 had changed society for good"
Orlando Figes-"The humiliation of defeat by the Japanese left the army and the navy demoralised"
The tsarist regime, 1906-1914
The Dumas and the work of Stolypin
Orlando Figes-"There was a Stolypin but no Stolypinites"
Orlando Figes-"Bulygin's Duma was yet another example of too little too late"
Orlando Figes-"The convocation of the Duma...ensured that politics would no longer be the state's exclusive preserve"
Economic development, 1906-14 and the condition of Russia in 1914
M McCauley-"The support base of the autocratic regime was very narrow in 1914"
The First World War and the revolutions of 1917
The collapse of tsardom and the revolution of February 1917
Orlando Figes-"Nicholas II remained totally oblivious to the extremity of the situation"
Russia under the Provisional Government and the revolution of October 1917
Orlando Figes-"As for the Provisional Government ­ well, it was looking increasingly provisional"
Adam Ulam-"The Bolsheviks did not seize power, they picked it up"
Robert Service-"Lenin alone was respected by all sections of the Bolshevik party and his patriarchal style strengthened his
dominance"

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