The Bolshevik Revolution Of 1917 Essay

The Bolshevik Revolution Of 1917 Essay

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The Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 was the coup d’etat that removed the Tsarist Regime in Russia and replaced it with a socialist, provisional government led by Vladimir Lenin. The main causes of the coup was the economic turmoil that characterized the era as well as the toll the failing Russo-Japanese War had on the Russian populace and economy. To understand Lenin’s ideology, and therefore understand the core ideas behind the provisional government and the Soviet Union, it is critical to study various the branches of socialism during the late 19th-century and early 20th-century. The pamphlet, “What Must Be Done,” was written by Lenin in 1902. It represented the foundational ideological assumptions of Bolshevism, and how Lenin envisioned the Social-Democratic party carrying out the socialist revolution. It was published in the Iskra newspaper, a democratic socialist newspaper founded by Lenin, Julius Martov, Georgi Plekhanov, Vera Zasulich, and Pavel Axelrod with the goal of rallying the scattered Russian social-democrats around the mutual rejection of the economist (reactionary) ideology.
“What Must Be Done” contained four main components Lenin considered imperative to a successful and lasting socialist revolution. Firstly, Lenin insisted on the development of advanced revolutionary theory and the education of all comrades about such theories; secondly, he postulated that workers required assistance of “educated intelligentsia” to aid in the development of class consciousness; third, he argued that socialist movement in Russia would only survive if it was strictly revolutionary, rather than reformist; finally, he stressed the importance of extending efforts to all spheres of life, rather than confining efforts to just the econom...


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...e document is one-sided in nature (solely defending Lenin’s ideas while refuting those of the reformists) readers should ideas presented in the document with a grain of salt. If one uses this document as a stand alone to learn about the various branches of socialism at the time, they would be mislead to believe that revolutionary socialism is the only way, and that all other approaches (or economic ideologies) are incorrect. Furthermore, only using this document would result in one not understanding critiques of the document, thereby resulting in a biased and incomplete view of history. This document should be used in tandem with the viewpoints of other socialist leaders at the time (such as Trotsky and Bernstein) if one desires to fully understand the state of socialism (and the viewpoints of prominent figures) in Russia during the late 19th and early 20th century.

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The Bolshevik Revolution Of 1917 Essay

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