Russian Provisional Government and Bolsheviks?

I need help with this discussion and evalution assignment.

Discussion and evaluation of the role of the Communists during Russia under the Provisional Government in 1917 and to which extent did they have support of the Russian population.

Thank you.

2 Answers

  • 8 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    You need to look at the exponential growth of support for the Bolsheviks - focusing on Lenin's return to Russia - the Finland Station speech, known as the April Thesis, the July Days - when the Bolsheviks nearly seized power, and the elections to the Constituent Assembly in November 1918.

    The Bolsheviks went from being almost the smallest party in Russia to the second largest.

    You should examine WHY this occurred.

    One possible explanation is that the February Revolution was, in reality, TWO revolutions that happened at the same time, yet produced two different results - a bourgeois revolution, which produced the Provisional Government and a working class revolution which produced the Petrograd Soviet. As the Provisional Government vacillated on WWI, on the economy, on elections to the Constituent Assembly and on land reform, the Petrograd Soviet turned more and more to the left - soon it was dominated, not by the Mensheviks as it had been in March, but by the Bolsheviks and their allies - the Left Socialist Revolutionary Party.

    However, their support was not universal, it tended to concentrated in the industrial areas - Petrograd, Moscow and the Donbas, with the Socialist Revolutionaries (both Left and Right versions of the party) being the largest party nationwide. Bolshevik supporters were prominent in key unions - the railway workers, telegraph and postal unions and amongst the rank and file in the army and navy - particularly those stationed in the capital, Petrograd, and on the island fortress of Kronshtadt.

    So despite the fact that they were not the largest party in the country, their support was concentrated in key political, military and strategic areas.

  • 8 years ago

    To the previous answer I'd add that they managed to hit the nerve with their promises to the people. They basically promised peace to everyone (quitting WW1, which ruined the economy and impoverished a lot of people. Besides they won support of a great deal of the active military personnel), factories to the workers (nationalization of all the industry and transferring its management to the workers), and land to the peasants (expropriation of all the land from all private owners and transferring it to peasant communities - this was very important since the country was mostly peasant and the Empire experienced a lasting land crisis).

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.