The Russian Peasant Movement: 1906-1917

The Russian Peasant Movement: 1906-1917

The Russian Peasant Movement: 1906-1917

The Russian Peasant Movement: 1906-1917

Excerpt

The original thesis of which this publication forms but a part, contained a somewhat extensive treatment of the period of Russian serfdom, if by that only partially accurate term the words krepostnoe pravo (bondage right) may fittingly be expressed. The conditions under which Emancipation (Osvobozdenie) was achieved in February 1861 by the privately-owned peasants were considered in some detail. The reasons why a "peasant question" existed at the outset of the time which is embraced in the following pages were briefly analysed. A cardinal feature of peasant social organisation--the land-commune (mir)--received the attention which is due to its historical importance.

But after a short historical introduction the reader of this volume will find him- or herself placed immediately in the revolutionary turmoil of 1905 which was a rehearsal, so to speak, of the catastrophic changes of 1917. The opening chapter illustrates the causes of a new Governmental policy in agrarian affairs--that known by the name of Stolypin--the last strong executive personality whom the old Russian régime produced. Stolypin's policy which caused acute controversy, especially in the new Russian Parliament (the "Duma"), is, together with its results, set out in the second chapter.

In view of Lenin's act in assuming responsibility for the aims of the peasant risings of 1917, the significance of the third chapter, "Lenin and the Peasant Movement," is obvious. From the fourth and fifth chapters one may . . .

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