Social Revolution In Russia

Good Essays
At the dawn of the twentieth century, Russia was in a political crisis. The abolishment of serfdom in 1861 and the Industrial Revolution of the 1880s created an exodus from farms to cities as the former serfs sought employment in factories. With no representation for the workers, factories were unsafe and workdays long. Those who remained in the rural areas, found the liberation from serfdom to be anything but free as they struggled to pay for land that barely supported their existence. By the early 1900s, the proletariat, or working class, began to call for better wages and improved working conditions. The peasantry wanted the opportunities of real freedom and the ability to provide for themselves. Both the proletariat and the peasants…show more content…
It ended centuries of oppression and provided the peasants the opportunity to own land, vote, and live freely in society. The emancipation taught the peasantry that even under an autocratic rule, reform is achievable. The industrial revolution sent many of the peasants from the rural farms to the urban areas to work in factories. However, the peasants had simply traded the oppressive agrarian life for an equally oppressive urban industrial life. They worked long hours, generally six days a week, and their wages were barely enough to sustain a family. The factories were unsafe and many workers suffered permanent injuries. Unions and strikes were illegal, making improvements for workers impossible. Marx and Engels defined these workers, the proletariat, as “a class, of laborers, who live only so long as they find work, and who find work only so long as their labor increases capital.” The proletariat was the foundation of Russia’s industry. Yet, Tsar Nicholas II refused to acknowledge their grievances, nor did he implement measures to improve their working conditions. But, their plight did not go unnoticed and change was on the horizon. The Russian Social Democratic Labor Party, formed in 1898 on Marxist ideology, saw the proletariat as the catalyst they needed to establish a socialistic society in Russia. For the proletariat, the Russian Social…show more content…
The R.S.D.L.P defined the political needs of the proletariat as, “freedom of association, strikes, assembly, speech, and publication, and the inviolability of the individual.” The Party recognized the economic disadvantages of the proletariat and used their frustrations with the Tsar to compel their allegiance. The proletariat, with only decades of freedom behind them, eagerly accepted the guidance of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party. The future of Russia, as portrayed by the R.S.D.L.P., was a perfect society where everyone was equal and economic hardships were nonexistent. Having recently experienced the end of centuries serfdom, the proletariat believed radical change was possible. Their allegiance to the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party was
Get Access