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A People's Tragedy The Russian Revolution 1891–1924

Free download A People's Tragedy The Russian Revolution 1891–1924 ´ PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook Written in a narrative style that captures both the scope and detail of the Russian revolution Orlando Figes's history is certain to become one of the most important contemporary studies of Russia as it was at the beginning of the 20th century With an almost cinematic eye Figes captures the broad movements of war and revolution never losing sight of the individuals whose lives make up his subject He makes use of personal papers and personal histories to illustrate the effects the revolution wrought o. A people s tragedy The Russian Revolution 1891 1924 Orlando FigesA People s Tragedy The Russian Revolution 1891 1924 is an award winning book written by British historian Orlando Figes and published in 1996 According to Figes the whole of 1917 could be seen as a political battle between those who saw the revolution as a means of bringing the war to an end and those who saw the war as a means of bringing the revolution to an end 2011 1891 1924 1388 2 9789641850465 1 9789641850441 2 9789641850458 1891 1924 1891 1924 1917 1891 1924 1917 1995 1891 1917 1917 1918 1918 1924

Free download A People's Tragedy The Russian Revolution 1891–1924

Free download A People's Tragedy The Russian Revolution 1891–1924 ´ PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook For a new generation of students of Russian history Sympathy for the charismatic leaders and ideological theorizing regarding Hegelian dialectics and Marxist economics two hallmarks of much earlier writing on the Russian revolution are banished from these clear eyed fair minded pages of A People's Tragedy The author's sympathy is suarely with the Russian people That commitment together with the benefit of historical hindsight provides a standpoint Figes take full advantage of in this masterful histor. The Russian Revolution launched a vast experiment in social engineering perhaps the grandest in the history of mankind It was arguably an experiment which the human race was bound to make at some point in its evolution the logical conclusion of humanity s historic striving for social justice and comradeship Figes writes about the Russian Revolution as of a coup in both February and October the second time only Bolsheviks participated and it was even haphazard by culturally isolated intelligentsia that really shouldn t have worked out It was ultimately successful due to the incompetent backward thinking tsarist regime and Whites Reform was completely rejected yet essential to the future of the Romanovs In the beginning the Bolsheviks had scant support but they did have discipline ruthlessness and a cause Plus the peasants thought they could keep the land they took from the gentry under the Bolsheviks but would have to return it under the Whites Not a successful strategy in a hugely peasant country The Whites were all about revenge and turning back time They also wanted to restore the empire and tamp down on nationalist and local language movements The Bolsheviks paid lip service to these concerns and it ultimately worked for them A middle class barely existed Additionally Figes points out that in newly industrialized Russia the workers were really just peasants trying to make some money after harvest And soldiers were mostly peasants conscripted against their will So to rule Russia after Nicholas abdicated ya needed to improve or at the least convincingly promise to improve the lot of the peasants In the end we know how it worked out for the peasants Lenin needed them so he told them what they wanted to hear They were not at all political More like locally communal anarchists trying to escape the state in any form If you have time for only one book on the Russian Revolution this is itTsarist regime The tsarist regime s downfall was not inevitable but its own stupidity made it so the obstinate refusal of the tsarist regime to concede reforms turned what should have been a political problem into a revolutionary crisis Alexander s counter reforms his and Nicolas s reactionary philosophy To a large extent the workers revolutionary movement was created by the tsarist regime Alexander II did not prep Nicolas to rule which reminded me of Peter and Catherine with their unfortunate heirs Alexandra was not the ideal spouse She pushed him to be even recalcitrant Combined with Rasputin Nicolas had the worst nepotistic advisors until today s White House Nicolas had a astrong sense of duty He was not passive He just sucked at his job Had a narrow perspective focused on details The provinces were under governed Romanovs became victim of their own propaganda Romanov regime fell under the weight of its own internal contradictions In some ways a revolution started at the top like the one under GorbachevTsarist state turned many into revolutionaries after overreacting to any call for greater freedoms In a way he probably found it easier to abdicate than to turn himself into a constitutional king That was Nicholas s tragedy PeasantsThe peasants did not feel part of a nation They did not abide by government rules unless forced all started by the peasant revolution on the land before 1917Emancipation of serfs landed nobles not getting up to speed freed serfs getting screwed The emphatic rejection of the Whites by the peasantry and the non Russians determined the outcome of the civil war MilitaryDisastrous war with Japan in the midst of a domestic social revolution Replay during WWI and the army got really fed up no food no uniforms poor training and lousy leadership As they began to realize they were cannon fodder they were revolutionized If the Tsar had signed a separate peace with Germany who knows The soldiers may have showed him a some form of allegiance Once many in the army became revolutionized the Tsar was for all intents and purposes finished Famine 1890sThe famine further radicalized people The conflict between the people and the regime had been set in motion UrbanizationWas distabalizing in its rapidity in a backward unprepared country Poorly educated workers could not progress beyond the simplest abstract ideas Theirs was a black white world OTOH the literacy rate was growing rapidly which allowed people access to written propagandaThe BolsheviksMostly comprized of the urban intelligentsia who latched on to European ideas and dogmatized them snuffing out debate They had a passion for big ideas which gave us Tolstoy and Dostoevsky and also Lenin and Trotsky Guilt was the psychological inspiration of the revolution They witnessed huge horrifying gaps in standards of living They simultainiously mythologized the peasants and were disgusted by them Marxism which was never really practiced in Russia was treated as a science thus further enrapturing the areligious intelligentsiaThe inhumane viciousness of the Tsarist police led directly to the same in the Bolsheviks The tortured terrified and oppressed became the torturers terrorists and oppressors How novel is that Waterboarding anyone it is surely true that the Bolsheviks were psychologically prepared for a civil war in a way that could not be said of its opponents One might compare it to the Spanish Civil War Franco s side was ready and eager for a civil war the same could hardly be said of the Republicans There were times when the Bolsheviks acted like a local mafia than the ruling party of the largest country in the world The key to this Communist utopia was control of the food supply without that the government had no means of controlling the economy and society The Bolsheviks were painfully aware of the fact that their regime lay at the mercy of a largely hostile peasantry The Bolshevik fear of the peasant was the great unresolved tension of the 1920s one that led inexorably towards the tragedy of collectivization The recruitment of peasants into communism was mostly aimed at the resentful sons of peasants who were unsatisfied with and embarrassed by the peasant life Self hating peasants then turned on their own A big part of collectivization was the get rid of these apolitical peasant fathers See Turganev Bolshevism was a very Russian thing Its belief in militant action its insistence contrary to the tenets of Marx and Hegel that a revolution could jump over the contingencies of history placed it firmly in the Russian messianic tradition One could argue that the command system was itself an inevitable outcome of the contradiction of October a proletarian dictatorship in a peasant country Imagining they could remake mankind the Bolsheviks believed that human nature could be changed simply by altering the social environment in which people lived Man cannot be transformed uite so easily human nature moves slowly than ruling ideologies or society This is perhaps the one enduring moral lesson of the Russian Revolution as it is indeed of the terrible history of this 21st century AmenIntelligentsia the single greatest difference between Russia and the West was that in Western Eusrope citizens were generally free to do as they pleased so long as their activities had not been specifically prohibited by the state while the people of Russia were not free to do anything unless the state gave them specific permission to do it The February Revolution was like a peasant riot The men of February intoxicated by their own self image as the heirs of 1789 were deluded into believing that they could resolve problems of 1917 by importing Western constitutional practices and policies for which their were no real precedents nor the necessary cultural base in Russia Apart from the state itself there was nothing holding Russia together the whole of the civilization of the gentry had never been than a thin veneer laid over the top of the brutal exlpoitation of the peasants from which the revolution had emerged Lenin The October seizure of power few historical events in the modern era better illustrate the decisive effect of an individual on the course of history Without Lenin s intervention it would probably never have happened at all and the history of the 20th century would have been very different Lenin usurped power for power s sake He held workers and peasants in contempt It was mostly about his needs He was ready to ditch the Soviets when he couldn t use them The Masses The tragedy of the Russian Revolution was that the people were too weak politically to determine its outcome During WWI on the home front no food no provisions no heat etc Historians have tended to neglect the connections between this plebian war on privilege and the origins of the Red Terror it had a strange mass appeal Loot the looters take from those who still have anything worthwhile the whole of the social revolution had been largely driven by petty localism Even if the revolution didn t improve the lives of Russians at least it wrecked the aristocracy Russians seem to thrive on schadenfreude Zloradstvo This low cultural level of the Soviet bureaucracy was to be a permanent legacy of October which wouldn later come to haunt Bolshevik leaders They destroyed the former leaders got rid of skilled workers massacred the aristocracy and drained what had been a tiny middle class New bureaucrats military officers etc were untrained and uineducated You can still pick up on a crass rudeness in public Moscow today TodayI wonder if Putin knows about this reoccurring Russian oversight of not grooming an heir inevitably leading to disaster Or maybe there will be another revolution Kids born since Yeltsin can easily compare their lot to the those of their Western peers Plus it must suck living in a society where the rule of law is meaningless Causes high anxiety and hatredTrump is certainly no Lenin for starters Lenin read books but this antisocial narcissistic personality disorder tool of the Kremlin is running my nation s capitol like no one before him Or after God willing And you just know Trump hates the unwashed masses who voted for him just as Lenin hated the peasants and didn t care much for the workers either Trump needed the white disaffected voters in the middle of this country so he told them what they wanted to hear Let s see how it works out for themIn the passage above about the Bolsheviks operating as a mafia substitute Bolshevik with Trumpistas and largest with most powerful and then have a shot of whiskeyGuilt is still a dangerous motivator much less dangerous when used as a dissuader Guilt is related to shame which has gotten the Middle East into a lot of trouble To me guilt implies belittlement What began as privileged guilt in Russia before the Revolution resulted in disaster White guilt is doing us no good Westerners who feel guilty for the difficulties many predominantly Muslim countries are experiencing with modernity and how the people of those countries are reacting seem to be looking down upon them Like they can t be expected to play nice and improve their lot cuz they re not white Christians I call BS on all of it It goes hand in hand with victimhood Also not a good motivator Sad Our continued involvement making war and social engineering in countries who don t want us and whom we do not understand is a never ending disaster We have now very overtly taken sides with the Sunnis against the Shia WHAT ARE WE THINKING What s the plan hereIn the Southern US among former Confederacy states we are slowly dealing with The Cult of the Lost Cause by removing monuments honoring those who fought for the breakup of my beloved country This is the best speech of the year Hat off to Mr Landrieu Mayor of the great city of New Orleans More speeches like this please I think of this when I wonder if Russia can come to terms with its past Would be a very healthy thing to do Their revolutionary tragedy lay in the legacies of their own cultural backwardness rather than the evil of some alien Bolsheviks They were not the victims of the revolution but protagonists in its tragedy Putin plays on this sickness of Russian victimhood today to help keep up his poll numbers The West is out to get us Poor innocent Russia The ghosts of 1917 have not been laid to rest The book was very long and sometimes repetitive However when dealing with the Russian Revolution you re allowed to go on It s just so complicated

Read & Download ê PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook á Orlando Figes

Free download A People's Tragedy The Russian Revolution 1891–1924 ´ PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook N a human scale while providing a convincing and detailed understanding of the role of workers peasants and soldiers in the revolution He moves deftly from topics such as the grand social forces and mass movements that made up the revolution to profiles of key personalities and representative characters Figes's themes of the Russian revolution as a tragedy for the Russian people as a whole and for the millions of individuals who lost their lives to the brutal forces it unleashed make sense of events. First Figes briskly deals with all those things you thought you knew about the Russian Revolution Lenin Stalin Trotsky Kerensky the liberals the Bolsheviks the Tsar Again and again I realized I had picked up myths either promoted by those who lost or those who consolidated the Revolution The mythmaking machine was going full tilt from 1917 onwards particularly during the Stalinist and Cold War Years and this book would be irreplaceable if only for stripping away so much that you thought you knew which was wrongSecond by starting the book in 1891 with a famine which revealed the incompetence of the Tsarist beaurocracy and ending with the death of Lenin in 1924 Figes permits himself a sweep of events that makes what actually happened even dramatic than it was Again and again you not only read about but hear from the survivors of mistakes errors misconceptions indolence arrogance foolishness well meaning idiocy in a way that as a human being is than heartbreaking Again and again the Revolution might never have happened a democracy might have developed steps taken could have been taken back but they weren t Instead one of the great mass tragedies of history occurred and you feel like a helpless bystander watching it happenThis is remarkable history and it is an extraordinary achievement It is bound to upset those with fixed ideologies on both the left and the right If you ever read only one book on the Russian Revolution make it this oneThe Communists are given heavy treatment in this text Not only do we see how they came to power we get huge doses of their philosophy Figes gives a detailed examination of the intellectual currents that gave rise to the Communist movement as well as their actions once they attained power What emerges is a bleak picture Communism is death to all it touches The Bolsheviks sought to not only rule by dictatorship but to change the very essence of man into an automaton subservient to the state Figes shows the reader the Red Terror and some of the other methods the Bolsheviks used to try and bring about this subservience It is a horrifying picture made worse of course under the rule of StalinFiges maintains a fairly neutral perspective throughout the book an apologist to neither the Tsar nor the Communists though harboring a noticeable preference and remorse for the incompetent Provisional Government When he does show some bias he is never overbearing and the few opinions that he expresses do not detract in any way from the materialThe Tsar is portrayed as an incompetent and stubborn fool which I have come away thinking is a fair assessment Figes gives ample evidence for his conclusions describing the failure of Nicholas to effectively rule over an inefficient and contradictory governmentI found the treatment of the Bolsheviks to be relatively sympathetic and the book does not suffer because of it They are depicted as a ruthless and especially fortunate revolutionary faction a group ready to use any means necessary to obtain power but in the end given a gift with the success of their unlikely coup Some readers may find this insufficiently damning but while I would have liked a little about how the nature of the revolution affected later developments the abominable governance which followed is not Figes s topic

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  • A People's Tragedy The Russian Revolution 1891–1924
  • Orlando Figes
  • English
  • 17 January 2019
  • null