Chapter : 2. Socialism In Europe & The Russian Revolution

Social Movement Between 1905-1907

1905 Revolution Bloody Sunday :
On January 9, 1905, a large number of peaceful workers with their wives and children, tried to approach the winter palace in St. Petersburg to present a petition to the Tzar. When the procession reached near the palace, the royal troops in the absence of the Tzar started firing at the workers. As a result of which thousands of people were killed. Since the incident took place on Sunday, it is known as ‘Bloody Sunday’.
The news of killings provoked the Russian people and even the army and navy. In October, the Tzar, under pressure from the masses announced his manifesto, with following provisions :
1. Freedom of speech
2. Formation of Duma
3. Freedom of forming organisation.
But all those promises were short-lived and Tzar re-established his autocratic rule.
Manifesto : Manifesto is a document issued by a political party before the elections which contains its policies, programmes and promises to be fulfilled in the event of its coming into power. Forced by the revolution Czar issued a manifesto in October, 1905. He promised to grant freedom of speech, press and assembly. He also promised a constitution and an elected body called the 'Duma' to make the laws. The implementation of the proposals given in the manifesto were not implemented effectively and the Czar reversed his decision.
A Dress Rehearsal : Though the revolution of 1905 failed to achieve its object, it proved to be a dress-rehearsal for the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917.
The incident of Bloody sunday caused widespread disturbances all over Russia. Strikes took place in many Russian towns. Mutinies or rebellions broke out in the navy and the army. The sailors of the battleship 'Potemkin' joined the revolutionaries. The work in trade and industry came to a stand still. Workers in factories, docks and railways also went on a strike. The soldiers and the representatives of the non-Russian nationalities came into close contact with the revolutionaries (Bolsheviks) in the country.
1. During the period to revolution, a new form of workers organisation called the Soviet (the council of workers representatives) came into being.
2. They became the instruments of political power.
3. These Soviets played a significant role in bringing about the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917.

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