The First Revolution 1905-1907 took place in connection with a number of factors that manifested themselves in various spheres of Russian society at that time. The revolutionary situation did not develop instantly, but was escalated gradually due to unresolved problems that had been accumulating since the middle of the 19th century. At the beginning of the twentieth century, capitalism moved to the highest stage of its development - imperialism, which was accompanied by an aggravation of all contradictions in society both within the country and at the international level.
The working day lasted fourteen hours
Causes of the Revolution 1905–1907 lie in the fact that in the country, in different segments of the population, a large number of people have appeared who are dissatisfied with their lives. It is worth noting the disenfranchised position, first of all, of the working class, which became the driving force in 1917. At the beginning of the twentieth century, the number of representatives of the proletariat in Russia reached fourteen million people.(of which cadre workers - about ten percent). And these fourteen million industrialists were forced to work 14 hours a day (with the officially established working day since 1897 at 11 and a half hours).
Exile without investigation and trial
The first Russian revolution (1905–1907) became possible also because at the same time the working class was significantly limited in its rights to defend its own interests. In the Russian Empire, there were secret regulations at the level of the Ministry of the Interior, which allowed members of the proletariat to be exiled without investigation or trial for participating in protest actions. For the same actions, one could go to jail for a period of 60 to 240 days.
They worked for pennies
Russian Revolution 1905-1907 made possible because of the brutal exploitation of the working class by the owners of industries. For example, in the processing of minerals from each ruble of profit, workers got less than a third (32 kopecks), and in the processing of metals and the food industry even less - 22 and 4 kopecks, respectively. In those days, they spent even less on the “social program” - 0.6% of the expenses of entrepreneurs. This may have been partly due to the fact that more than half of the country's industry was owned by foreign investors. As an analysis of the securities of that time (shares of railways, enterprises, banks) showed, many of them had distribution addresses in the USA and Europe, as well as inscriptions not only in Russian, but also in English, German and French. Revolution 1905–1907, goalswhich, at first glance, do not reveal obvious foreign influence, is based on the fact that there were not enough industrialists and representatives of the ruling elite who would be interested in the growth of the welfare of the Russian people.
The "popularity" of Russian investment then was partly due to the fact that during the monetary reforms of 1897, the ruble of the Russian Empire was pegged to gold. A flow of foreign money went into the country, which had the “reverse side of the coin” with the withdrawal of funds in the form of interest, also in gold. So, in 1887-1913, almost 1,800 million rubles in gold were invested in the Russian Empire from Western countries, and about 2,300 million gold rubles were also withdrawn in the form of income.
Bread was consumed almost three times less than overseas
The revolution in Russia (1905-1907) was based on the fact that the standard of living of the population was significantly lower than in European countries. For example, subjects of the Russian Empire at that time consumed about 3.45 centners of bread per capita per year, in the United States this figure was close to a ton, in Denmark - about 900 centners, in France - more than half a ton, in Germany - 4.32 centners. At the same time, it was in our country that large crops of grain were gathered, a significant part of which was exported, which created the prerequisites for the receipt of funds to the treasury, on the one hand, and the "malnutrition" of the people, on the other.
Life in the countryside before the Russian Revolution (1905–1907) began was also hard. During that periodpeasants had to pay significant taxes and excises, the area of peasant plots tended to decrease, many worked on leased plots, giving half of the harvest or most of the income received. The landowners, on the contrary, enlarged their holdings (one landowner's farmstead accounted for up to 300 peasant households in area) and excessively exploited the farmers dependent on them. Unlike the workers, the peasantry, whose share was up to 70% of the population of the Russian Empire, took part to a lesser extent in the historical process called the "Revolution of 1905-1907", the reasons, the results of which were not very encouraging for the farmers. Moreover, even on the eve of the 1917 revolution, many farmers were monarchists and believed in the “good king-father.”
The king did not want change
The revolution in Russia (1905-1907) is largely connected with the policy pursued by Nicholas II, who decided to follow the path of his father, Alexander III, and further strengthen the autocracy, instead of trying to liberalize Russian society, as he wanted to do grandfather, Alexander II. The latter, however, was killed on the day when he wanted to announce the first semblance of the Russian constitution. During his accession to the throne at the age of 26, Nicholas II pointed out that democratic changes were meaningless ideas, so the tsar was not going to take into account such opinions that had already been formed in a certain part of the educated society of that time, which did not add popularity to the autocrat.
Unsuccessful military campaign of Nicholas II
The Russo-Japanese War, which took place in 1904-1905, did not add it either. Japan unleashed it, but many in the Russian Empire also longed for some kind of military campaign to strengthen the authority of the authorities. The first Russian revolution (1905–1907) began during the hostilities (revolutionary uprisings first took place in January 1905, while the war ended in August of that year), which were, by and large, unsuccessful. Russia did not have fortified fortresses, the supply of the army and navy was poorly organized, soldiers and officers died senselessly, and the surrender of the Port Arthur fortress, the events of Tsushima and Mukden affected the image of the autocrat and his entourage more than negatively.
Periodization of the Revolution
Historians know the following stages of the 1905-1907 revolution:
- First - in January-March 1905.
- Second, lasting from April to August 1905.
- Third, lasting from autumn 1905 to March 1906
At the first stage, the main events developed after Bloody Sunday, when about one hundred and forty thousand proletarians came with religious symbols and a petition about the needs of the working class to the Winter Palace, where some of them were shot by Cossacks and government troops. In addition to economic demands, the petition also included proposals to establish popular representation in the form of a Constituent Assembly, introduce freedom of speech, religion, equality of all before the law, reduce the length of the working day, separate church from state,public education, etc.
The bourgeoisie supported the idea of constituent assemblies
The working masses were led by the priest Georgy Gapon, who headed the "Meeting of the Workers of St. Petersburg" established by the police a few years earlier, which was designed to weaken the influence of revolutionary ideas on the proletariat. He also wrote the petition. Nicholas II was not in the capital during the procession. At the first stage, about 810,000 people took part in the popular unrest, the workers were supported by students, zemstvos, and employees. The revolution of 1905–1907, whose goals were different for different groups of the population, first attracted the middle and big bourgeoisie into its ranks, who supported the idea of a constituent assembly. The tsar, in response to the indignation, wrote an order for the Minister of Internal Affairs, A. Bulygin, demanding that a draft legislative body (Duma) be prepared.
Development of the revolutionary process: second stage
How did the revolution of 1905–1907 develop further? The second stage can be briefly characterized as follows: in April-August 1905, about 0.7 million people took part in the strikes, including a strike of textile workers from May 12 to July 26 (in Ivanovo-Voznesensk). In the same period, peasant uprisings took place in every fifth district of the European part of the Russian Empire. Under the pressure of these events, in August 1905 the authorities issued documents on the election of the Duma, but with a very small number of voters. Elections to this body were boycotted by all sections of the protest movements, so the Dumawas never created.
What results did the revolution of 1905–1907 bring at this stage? The goals pursued by the peasantry throughout the revolutionary events of the early twentieth century were partly achieved in August 1905, when farmers were able to gain access to state lands. But only by buying them through the so-called Peasant Bank, which few could afford.
Third period brought civil liberties
The third stage of the revolution in Russia (1905–1907) was the longest. It began in September 1905 and ended in March 1906. Here, the most significant event was the all-Russian political strike, in which about two million people took part throughout the country. The demands were the same - an eight-hour working day, the convocation of a Constituent Assembly, democratic freedoms. Government structures intended to suppress the uprising by force of arms (general Trepov’s order “do not spare cartridges and do not shoot blanks to disperse the crowd”), but on October 17 of the same year, Nicholas II issued a decree that gave significant civil liberties. It included freedom of association, assembly, speech, and inviolability of the person. After the adoption of this decree, trade unions, councils of workers' deputies began to emerge, the unions of the Russian People and October 17 were founded, and Stolypin's agrarian reforms began.
The main events of the revolution (1905-1907) include two convocations of the State Duma. These were attempts to transform the political system in Russiafrom autocratic to parliamentary monarchy. The First Duma worked from April 1906 to July of the same year and was abolished by the emperor, as it actively fought against the current government, was distinguished by the initiation of radical laws (the Social Revolutionaries proposed the nationalization of natural resources and the abolition of private ownership of land, etc.).
The Duma came up with nothing
The events of the revolution (1905-1907) in terms of the work of law-making bodies were not particularly successful. Thus, the Second State Duma, which worked in 1907 from February to June, presented many proposals for resolving the agrarian issue from different parties, considered the food issue, provisions for the abolition of courts-martial and military conscription, and opposed the "illegal actions" of the police than great "angry" the current government. There were about 500 deputies in the Second Duma, among whom 38% had higher education, home schooling - 8%, secondary education - about 20%, lower - 32%. One percent of the Duma was illiterate, which is not surprising, since almost 170 deputies came from the illiterate peasantry. But there were directors of factories in the Duma - 6 people, lawyers - about thirty, and even one poet.
Why did the revolution end in 1907?
Together with the dissolution of the Second State Duma, the revolution of 1905–1907 ended. Briefly, the activities of this body can be described as insufficiently productive, since the Duma, again, fought more with other authorities. In total she took 20legislative acts, of which only three have received the force of law, including two projects to help people affected by crop failures.
Results of the first Russian revolution
What did the revolution of 1905–1907 bring to the inhabitants of the Russian Empire? The goals of the majority of the protesting classes of society during this historical event were not achieved, therefore it is believed that the revolutionary process was defeated. Certain results in the form of the establishment of a legislative body representing a number of estates, the granting of some civil liberties, of course, were. But the state structure did not undergo any special changes, the land issue was not completely resolved, the working conditions of the working class remained difficult, so there were prerequisites for the further development of revolutionary processes.
The results of the revolution included the formation of three main "camps" of political parties (government, liberal-bourgeois and democratic), which will still appear on the political arena of Russia in 1917.