Serfdom In Russia

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The question of investigation for this internal assessment is: “To what extent did the emancipation of the serfs push Russia’s industrial development into a more modern state?” Serfdom was a condition of bondage, where a serf was tied and forced to stay in a particular area. A serf was a peasant who lived under the political system of feudalism, they worked on their landowner’s land, and they were allowed to rent a small patch of land on which they could practice subsistence farming to provide for their own needs. Alexander II recognized that serfdom was a liability to Russia’s development and took actions to try and abolish this feudal system Alexander II published his Emancipation Manifesto in March 1861. The Manifesto had then turned…show more content…
From these issues that occurred it was quite evident that serfdom prevented the growth of Russian industry, obstructing the free flow of labor and restricting enterprise. It also prevented the introduction of modern methods of agriculture, leaving Russia poor and lagging behind the rest of Europe. Defeat in Crimea had shown that the army needed urgent reforms and this was difficult to achieve as long as serfdom survived. Abolition of serfdom was the only way to stop the rising number of peasant revolts as there had been over a thousand since 1800. It was quite evident that serfdom prevented Russia’s growth and development as a country, so it was then on March 3 1861 when Alexander II emancipated the serfs. The emancipation of the serfs had quite an impact on Russia, a positive impact at that, emancipating the serfs proved beneficial for the development of Russia as the Russian economic growth ran at an average of 4.6% between 1861 and 1900 and it continued to speed up during the years. Emancipating the serfs also lead to an increase in commercial farming and had quite a big impact on Russia’s agricultural sector and the changing nature of both the working and middle class lead to an increase in the number of people qualified to take on management roles in factories and industry increasing productivity. Around this time grain was Russia’s most important export, after the emancipation of the serfs there was a 10% increase in grain productivity. After the serfs were emancipated, industrial output increased by 60% and the industrial employment more than doubled as a result of Alexander II emancipating the
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