Alexander III Chapter Summary

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Passage A looks at Alexander's policy in a positive light by focusing on Alexander's attempts to save the country from the disastrous state it was in.However Passage A overlooks the consequences and the actual impact of his reforms. Passage B also overlooks the long term impact that Alexander's reforms had, instead focuses on the short term effects and immediate impact of Alexander's reforms.

Passage A describes the impact of Alexander’s domestic policies in theory rather than in practice, because of this we are given a limited insight into the impact of the reforms. Resulting in an exaggerated description of Alexander II’s domestic policies. Passage A interprets Alexander II’s reforms to be on the same scale as Peter the Great or Lenin, making
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Passage B states that Alexander’s reforms can only be considered radical only when compared to the actions of Russia’s previous leaders, as they were pro- Russification. Passage B argues that the government attempt to modernise Russia left the intelligentsia alienated. However intelligentsia were alienated, as only Slavophil’s were against modernisation whilst Westernisers supported Russian modernisation. Passage B argues that alienating the intelligentsia undermined the stability of the regime, which was not true as Alexander followed the advice of his father and maintained his autocratic rule with complete power. Passage B claims that the Edict of Emancipation freed serfs from their feudal duties and allotted land for their needs . Whilst serfs were allotted land for their needs, this tended to be the worst piece of land. They also had heavy restrictions that prevented them from moving as they now had to pay redemption tax, indebted to the state. The statement that the serfs were free was not entirely true. Passage B addresses the impact of Alexander II’s domestic policies on peasants noting that the ‘peasants were incredulous’ The peasants showed their anger at the terms of the edict by rioting as they believed that true terms of the Emancipation had been concealed. This was due to Alexander hoping to exercise the same control over the serfs as the landowners, this meant that

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