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Assess the principal reasons leading to the collapse of Tsarism in February 1917. Is it accurate to say that Tsarist Russia was torn apart by great internal contradictions?. Remy Foster. Why did authority crumble in Petrograd?. Workers Army Ruling Class Nicholas II.

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slide1

Assess the principal reasons leading to the collapse of Tsarism in February 1917. Is it accurate to say that Tsarist Russia was torn apart by great internal contradictions?

Remy Foster

why did authority crumble in petrograd
Why did authority crumble in Petrograd?
  • Workers
  • Army
  • Ruling Class
  • Nicholas II
why did authority crumble in petrograd1
Why did authority crumble in Petrograd?

Workers

  • Labour Strikes and Lock-Outs in Petrograd factories
  • 23rd February; Large bread queue in the Vyborg District becomes unruly
  • Striking and Unemployed workers joined in protest against Government
  • Economic depression is key

Protesters from Putilov Plant, Banner calls for increased pay to soldiers’ families

why did authority crumble in petrograd2
Why did authority crumble in Petrograd?

Army

  • Troops called in to put down protests
  • Cossacks protect protesters from police
  • Volinsky Guard Regiment disobey orders to fire on protesters then overthrow officers to join protest
  • Collapse of Tsarist Support ‘Tripod’

Tsardom

Army Church Aristocracy

slide5

Why did authority crumble in Petrograd?

Ruling Class

  • Duma attempted to restore power, but forced to create a new government to save Russia
  • Guchkov
    • Member of State Council
    • Organised Strike and march on Duma
    • Wanted Grand Duke Mikhail Aleksandrovich as Regent for Crown Prince Alexei

Alexander Guchkov 1862-1936

why did authority crumble in petrograd3
Why did authority crumble in Petrograd?

Nicholas II

  • Nicholas II away at Military Command in Mogilev
  • Not told of severity of situation
  • Unable to return to Petrograd

Katkov, 1967

how did tsarist rule end
How did Tsarist rule end?
  • Creation of Provisional Government
  • Abdication of Nicholas II
how did public outcry end tsarist rule
How did public outcry end Tsarist rule?

Creation of Provisional Government

  • During Petrograd revolt, leaders of the Duma formed a temporary committee
  • Tsarist ministers arrested leaving only the trustworthy
  • Duma gained support of the Petrograd Soviet and formed a Provisional Government under the leadership of Prince Lvov
how did public outcry end tsarist rule1
How did public outcry end Tsarist rule?

Abdication of Nicholas II

  • Urged by Army Officers at Pskov High Command to abdicate
  • Guchkov and Shulgin traveled from the Duma to convince Nicholas to abdicate in favour of a constitutional monarchy
  • By 10:00 on the 2nd March, Nicholas abdicated in favour of Crown Prince Mikhail Aleksandrovich
  • Aleksandrovich refused the throne
internal contradictions and the collapse of tsarism
Internal Contradictions and the collapse of Tsarism
  • Size
  • Population
  • Russifcation
  • Production
  • Politics
internal contradictions and the collapse of tsarism1
Internal Contradictions and the collapse of Tsarism

Size

  • Largest country
    • 8,416,959 Sq Miles in 1916
    • 1/6th of the Worlds landmass
  • No defensive borders
    • Long landlocked boundaries
    • Lack of Rivers / Mountains
internal contradictions and the collapse of tsarism2
Internal Contradictions and the collapse of Tsarism

Population

  • One of the populations Largest in the World
    • 125 Million People in 1897
  • Large percentage were peasants
    • 77% in 1897
  • Large scale poverty and public discontent
    • 52% of peasants could not sustain themselves in 1900
  • Great social divide between Ruling classes and the lower classes
internal contradictions and the collapse of tsarism3
Internal Contradictions and the collapse of Tsarism

Russification

  • Russia was made up of Catholic Poles, Protestant Germans/Finns, Tukestani Muslims, Jews, Siberian tribes among others
  • No violence toward other races, apart from Jews
  • Instead races were subjected to Russian culture, laws, school teaching and language as well as Orthodox Christianity
  • Led to nationalist movements and revolts in minority states
  • By 1900 only 45% of the population were ethnic Russians
  • Without Russian dominance, an Austria-Hungary style break up could have occurred
internal contradictions and the collapse of tsarism4
Internal Contradictions and the collapse of Tsarism

Production

  • Vast natural resources yet labour force based around agriculture
  • 1913 Iron output: 10,188 tons. 10.4 million tons in England
  • 1913 income per person: 101.2 руб. 463 in England

Riasanovsky and Steinberg, 2005

internal contradictions and the collapse of tsarism5
Internal Contradictions and the collapse of Tsarism

Politics

  • Power from autocrat. No laws or guidelines to limit power
  • Attempts by Tsars to improve liberalism and turn toward a constitutional monarchy
  • Essential features of Romanov rule remained unchanged
  • Alienation from Government as shown by the Army

Chubarov, 1999

conclusions
Conclusions

Tsarist rule collapsed because...

  • Economic issues made worse by the War
  • Protests in Petrograd brought Workers and Soldiers together against the Tsar
  • Motives of some members of the Duma and creation of the Provisional Government
  • Nicholas II and his separation from the Russian state.

Tsarist Russia was torn apart by internal contradictions such as...

  • Size and weakness of the Russian empire
  • Great yet impoverished population
  • Oppressed minority groups
  • Wealth in Russia’s resources but the lack of industry in order to cultivate them
  • The autocratic political system had failed to become democratic throughout the Romanov dynasty.
references
References
  • Browder, R. and Kerensky, A. (1961) The Russian Provisional Government 1917, Stanford, Stanford University Press
  • Chubarov, A. (1999) The Fragile Empire: A History of Imperial Russia, New York, Continuum
  • Chubarov, A. The Beggarly Empire (2007) [online]. available from; <http://allrussias.com/tsarist_russia/fragile_1.asp> [accessed 26th October 2011]
  • Ferro, M. (1972) The Russian Revolution of February 1917, London, Routledge
  • Katkov, G. (1967) Russia 1917, The February Revolution, Oxford, Longmans
  • Katkov, G., Oberländer, E., Poppe, N. and Von Rauch, G. (eds.) (1971) Russia Enters the Twentieth Century, London, Maurice Temple Smith Ltd
  • Kulikov, S. (2009) ‘“Revolutions Invariably Come From Above”: The Fall of Tsarism through the Prism of the Elite Circulation Prism’, Russian Studies in History, 47, 4, 8-39
  • Lockhart, R. (1991) ‘The February Revolution of 1917’, History Today, 41, 2, 34-42
  • Riasanovsky, N. and Steinberg, M. (2005) A History of Russia, 7th edition, New York, Oxford University Press
  • Westwood, J. (2002) Endurance and Endeavour: Russian History 1812-2001, 5th edition, Oxford, Oxford University Press