Tsarism, Leninism And Stalinism

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Astolphe de Custine, a French Marquis who visited Russia during the reign of Nicholas I observed, “Under an absolute despotism, it is the government which is revolutionary; for the word revolution signifies arbitrary system and violent power” (Custine 574). This remark was true not only for Tsarism, but also became true under the Revolutionary leadership of Lenin and then Stalin. When Tsarism ended in Russia, the people as well as the new leadership thought a new and better state would emerge. Communism was supposed to launch Russia into the future in a radical way. What actually emerged was a state very similar to the autocracy under Tsarism. Tsarism, Leninism, and Stalinism were all different theories and instances of rule but there…show more content…
Nicholas I was the “Iron Tsar” and ruled from 1825-1855. He came to power by crushing the Decembrist Rebellion. He was a military man never meant to be Tsar because he was the youngest of his brothers. He was very intelligent but also narrow-minded, orderly, and precise. Nicholas I was not originally a total reaction. Even though he came to power after crushing a rebellion, he did not become thoroughly reactionary until after the Polish rebellion in 1830-1831. Before the Polish rebellion, he even wanted to abolish serfdom, but afterwards all liberalism stopped and oppression increased. Nicholas II’s beliefs about ruling…show more content…
was the cause for the split in the Social Democratic party into the Bolsheviks (followers of Lenin) and the Mensheviks. The major dispute that Lenin’s pamphlet brought about was a dispute in basic Marxist theory. Marx said that in order for Communism to come into realization, the world had to go through a full Capitalistic phase where industrialization would grow and the Proletariat would form. Russia was still a feudal society, so it would have been fifty years at least before a Communist Revolution was even possible. The Mensheviks believed the Social Democrats would need to wait until Russia went through its Capitalist phase, Lenin and the Bolsheviks did not wish to wait and instead proposed immediate action and the overthrow of Tsarism. As Lenin put it, “The greater the spontaneous upsurge of the masses and the more widespread the movement, the more rapid, incomparably so, the demand for greater consciousness in the theoretical, political, and organizational work of Social Democracy” (Lenin 53). He wanted an active and proactive Social Democrat party and in the end, he succeeded and became dictator of a Bolshevik government (Hosking 395-396). One of Lenin’s key ideals was that a “Dictatorship of the Party” was necessary in the interim while the Proletariat was forming and strengthening itself in order to take power as the “Dictatorship of the Proletariat”. He claims that, “Social Democracy represents the working class…in

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