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15 Cards in this Set

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Russian Revolution

The Russian Revolution (1917) occurred during World War I and was precipitated by the failure of the imperial government of Tzar Nicholas II to perform well in that conflict. Revolution had 2 distinct stages (Feb- Provisional Gov. + Tzar's abdication) (Oct- Bolsheviks take over-- Civil War// USSR)//Failure to institute political and economic reforms


An economic and social system envisioned by the 19th Century German scholar Karl Marx. In theory, under communism, all means of production are owned in common, rather than by individuals

Dual Power

A term referring to the two governments that Russia had following the February Revolution - the provisional government and the Petrograd Soviet

Petrograd Soviet

A body that existed prior to the February Revolution as a sort of underground revolutionary labour union for workers and soldiers in the Petrograd area, containing members of different political parties. During the February Revolution, members of the Petrograd Soviet saw opportunity and declared themselves the government of Russia. However, they quickly found themselves competing with the provisional government

April Theses

A document published by Lenin shortly after his return to Russia from exile in 1917. It insisted that no support be given to the Provisional Government, calling for an immediate end to Russia's involvement in WWI and for socialist revolution as soon as possible


The radical Marxist revolutionary group formed in 1903, following a split in the Russian Social Democratic Party. The Bolsheviks, led by Lenin, wanted socialist revolution and the creation of a 'workers' dictatorship as early as practicable.


A political group that split from the Russian Social Democratic Labour party. The Mensheviks, less radical than the Bolsheviks, supported the idea of a socialist party that was open to all who wished to join and that would be ruled and organised in a democratic manner

Dictatorship of the Proletariat

A term describing the political system anticipated after a socialist revolution. Representatives of the proletariat would assume control of the government, eradicate democracy and make decisions to benefit the workers


The national parliament of Russia between 1906 and 1917. The Duma was formed by Tsar Nicholas II in the wake of the 1905 Revolution. It exerted little political influence during its lifetime


An abbreviated name for the Constitutional Democratic Party, a revolutionary party founded in 1905 and led by Pavel Milyukov. Membership of the Cadets was dominated by middle-class professionals and some zemstvo delegates. Their aim was to replace tsarism with a liberal-democratic republic or a constitutional monarchy

Alexander Kerensky

Member of the SRV and an active participant in both PROV. GOV and PS. At first, acted as a liaison between the two govs. Prov Gov = minister of justice, war and Prime. After Oct. Rev = fled to USA, taught Russian History at Stanford

Vladimir Lenin

Founder of the Bolshevik Party, organiser of the October Revolution and the first leader of the Soviet Union. Lenin spent most of the early 20th century living in exile in Europe. Devout follower of Marxism and believed that once a Communist revolution took place in Russia, it would spread around the world. Not involved in Feb, orchestrated October one --> Russia became a Communist state

Nicholas II

The last Russian tsar, who ruled from 1894 until 1917. Nicholas II = clumsy and ineffective leader who took over after his father's death. Gov caused resentment among Russian people// violence in 1905 // Nicholas II abdicated on March 2 1917// July 1918// Bolsheviks executed the Tsar + family

Joseph Stalin

Bolshevik leader // prominent only after Feb rev. // minor role in Oct// Lenin thought of his as a powerful ally // Came from a minority ethnic group// ambassador between all Russian states // growth of power // Commissar of nationalities

Leon Trotsky

Bolshevik leader// prominent figure of October Revolution// Exile during Feb, came back in May// joined Bolshevik party during Summer //Head of Military Committee // muscle for Oct. Rev. // Commissar of Foreign Affairs// negotiations with Germany and Austria // Treaty of Brest-Litovsk