1905 in St. Petersburg: Labor, Society, and Revolution

By Gerald D. Surh | Go to book overview
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APPENDIX 1
The Industrial Crisis and St. Petersburg Labor

Although the causes and general economic effects of the industrial crisis of 1899-1904 have been closely analyzed, its effect on the labor movement, presumed to have been profound, has not been differentiated by industry or geographical area or very extensively studied at all.1 Soviet historians have treated the crisis as a decisive step in the country's transition from the capitalist stage of development to the imperialist, monopoly-capitalist stage, and even as the opening of the revolutionary era that brought the downfall of autocracy and capitalism.2 Yet even the labor historians have dwelt more on the changes that the crisis produced in machine technology, in the degree of concentration and monopolization, and in the linkages between industrial and banking capital than on its immediate effects upon the working class.3 Yet 3,000 firms closed from 1900 to 1903, and 90,000 workers were idled in the Ukrainian iron and steel industry alone. The effect of the crisis on different industries varied a great deal. It was felt first in textile manufacturing and later, but more heavily, in the metal industry. It affected the everyday life of working Russia,

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1
V. Mukoseev, "Promyshlennyi pod"em ili promyshlennyi krizis," Obrazovanie ( 1907), nos. 8 (pp. 25-48), 9 (pp. 44-73), 10 (pp. 1-23). A. Piletskii, "Ekonomicheskii krizis i ego okonchanie," Obrazovanie, no. 4 ( 1906), otd. II, pp. 29-53. Balabanov, "Promyshlennost' v Rossii v nachale XX veka." Khromov, Ekonomicheskoe razvitie Rossii v XIX-XX vekakh, 1800-1917, pp. 307-13.
2
S. I. Potolov, "Proletariat Peterburga na rubezhe XIX-XX vv.," in Istoriia rabochikh Leningrada, p. 231. A. M. Solov'eva in Rabochii klass Rossii. Ot zarozhdeniia do nachala XX v., ed. M. S. Volin, Iu. I. Kir'ianov, et al. (M., 1983), p. 180. A. P. Korelin in Bovykin et al., eds., Rabochii klass v pervoi rossiiskoi revoliutsii 1905-1907 gg., p. 31.
3
For example, see Bovykin et al., eds., Rabochii klass, p. 383, n. 26.

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