The 1905 Revolution in Russia was a spontaneous outbreak of opposition against Tsar Nicholas II. This essay will assess the different long term, short term and trigger effects that caused it. This will include The Tsar’s personality, the growth of political unrest, the rising social tension, the Russo-Japanese War and Bloody Sunday.
One of the long term factors of the 1905 revolution was the political opposition the Tsar faced. It clearly highlighted Russians wanting change. Some of these parties included the Populists, the Kadets, the Octoberists, the Mensheviks and the Bolsheviks. The Mensheviks and the Bolsheviks split from a group called the Social Democrats into two groups. They both wanted a revolution because they wanted to change the unfair, iniquitous Tsarist regime and redistribute power based on a more equitable system; however, they wanted it in different ways. The Mensheviks wanted a traditional Marxist route to communism, whereas the Bolsheviks wanted to speed up the process. This was a cause of the 1905 revolution because it increased the political tension, which led to an increased number of people who wanted change. However, there was no way of out letting their political frustrations because the Tsar believed so strongly in autocracy. This links to the Tsar’s personality as a cause because people felt that the only thing left to do was start a revolution because he would not allow change under his absolute rule.
The tsar’s personality was a long term cause of the 1905 Revolution; he was an autocrat and believed he was given his autocratic powers by God. This belief meant he was totally against change in Russia and to it’s Government. Also aspects of his leadership skills showed his weaknesses and encouraged people to stand up against him as he was not thought to be powerful. He was said to be bored by long meetings and was known to have often agreed with the last person he spoke to. This led to the revolution as it meant the Tsar made bad decisions which were ineffective and unpopular. He was also said to be influenced by his wife and spent a lot of time with his family. This meant he had less time to travel around Russia so was out of touch with the people and couldn’t understand their needs, so he just did what his advisors told him. The Tsar’s personality also led to other causes of the 1905 revolution. It led to social tension as he was stubborn and against change. This led to protests in Russia, such as Bloody Sunday.
‘Bloody Sunday’ was the trigger cause of the 1905 Revolution, so was the main, and most important reason that it happened when it did. It caused the Revolution because the Tsar finally lost respect of Father Gapon and the rest of the Russian people. It caused widespread strikes in many towns and came to be called the ‘revolution’ of 1905. The reason that Nicholas lost the respect of his supporters was because a regiment of his soldiers turned what began as a peaceful protest into a bloodbath. The workers and their families were bearing a petition to the Tsar requesting amnesty for political prisoners, the summoning of a constituent assembly, and an eight hour working day and without warning, a regiment of the Tsar’s soldiers opened fire causing several hundred deaths. These deaths were depicted by opposition of the Tsar as deliberate attempt to massacre unarmed petitioners. Despite the Tsar not being there at the time, he was still blamed because he was held responsible for everything in his autocratic rule. His supporters no longer felt that he was a trustworthy leader that they could look up to; this was the trigger cause as they felt that they needed to overthrow him for the sake of Russia. The Russian people knew that the Tsar’s personality meant that he used violence to resolve his problem, this links to the Russo-Japanese War – one of the short term causes for the 1905 Revolution.
The Russo-Japanese War, 1904-1905, was an…