Opposition to the Tsar

  • Created by: Tori
  • Created on: 13-02-20 10:38
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  • Opposition to Tsarism
    • Peasant Life
      • 80% of the Russian population in 1894
        • Vast majority lived impoverished lives of hard work, large debt and high taxes.
        • Owned little or no land.
      • Fearing peasant disorder, Nicholas introduced a series of counter reforms.
        • Took away freedoms the peasants had enjoyed since 1860, hence caausing resentment.
          • Land Captains replaced zemstvos (elected committees by the people).
            • Became the main local government authority.
            • Managed the work of peasants, and administered law and order.
          • Peasants lost the right to elect people to the local zemstvos.
            • Land Captains amde the final decision regarding which candidates were allowed to serve on the zemstvos.
    • Working class
      • Urban factory workers made up 4% of the Russian popluation in 1894.
        • Emerged as a result of Sergei Witte's attempt to industrialise the economy in the 1890's.
          • Witte was one of the Tsar's most trusted and adept ministers who oversaw the early stages of industrialisation in Russia.
        • Paid better than peasants.
          • However, factories were dangerous and living conditions in the large slums of the major cities were filthy.
            • Hence, mortality rate was higher for workers than peasants.
          • Working conditions were very tough.
            • 12 hour days were the norm, although some were forced to work for up to 17 hours a day.
            • Factory managers could beat employees and prone to verbal abuse and degrading body searches.
            • Harsh conditions led to strikes and the growth of socialist groups in Russian cities.
    • The League of Liberation
      • In 1903, middle-class opponents of autocracy made the League of Liberation.
        • Led by Pavel Milyukov and Pyotr Struve.
        • Russia's Bourgeoisie (about 1.5% of the popluation in 1984) tended to want to create more democracy in Russia.
          • Middle-class demands were reformist or liberal, generally wanting:
            • A government with elected representatives to make laws.
            • A government that respected individual rights.
      • The leagues demands
        • Published a programme in early 1904, after it's first congress held in St Petersburg.
        • Included social, political and economic demands, including:
          • End to Autocracy.
          • Democratic government based on universal sufferage.
          • Maximum 8 hour day for workers.
          • Land redistrobution to the peasants.
          • Self-determination for all nations part of  the Russian Empire.
      • Composition of the League
        • Respresented 2 groups
          • Ideas of the urban middle-class intellectuals.
          • Those who held elected positions in the zemstvos.
          • Meant that the League represented liberal opinion in the counrty and the cities.
      • Conflict with the Govenment
        • Government believed the league was dangerous.
          • Hence, the Okhrana arrested leading members of the League soon after it's first Congress.
  • Workers and peasants disliked the Tsar due to the harshness of conditions, whereas middle-class wanted political reforms


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