Essay Title: "Why was successful the Russian revolution in 1917"? The Russian revolution was, without doubt, one of the greatest events that took place during the last century and in addition, one of the most positive upshots of the evolution of the human civilization. Like in any revolution that has broken out or will break out in the future, the basic point that needs to be raised is if in the post revolutionary period, its targets had achieved. The above consideration will be the main approach in evaluating the Russian revolution. Every revolution aims to take over authority, which during the Russian revolution was successful.
The revolt of the proletarians with Lenin and Bolsheviks as the leaders had as a result the take over of authority. The existence of the following factors made this a difficult achievement: i. The powerful tsarist authority, which was the governing of Russia through the centuries with monarchy regime. ii. The war against Germany during that period. During a war, rallying is necessary.
Under such circumstances, it is much more difficult to come closer to the people and engraft thoughts in their mind and hearts which come in opposition with the establishment. iii. The reaction of the Great Powers and their opposition regarding the formation of a soviet state. This carried on civil war. It must be noted down that the foreign powers encouraged and assisted in all aspects -militarily, inexpensively, and states manly- the formation of antirevolutionary movement. iv.
The church. According to Marxism, Lenin was considering the church as the people's opium; as the power under capitalism's service. Nothing could stop the rebellious Bolsheviks to overcome the above obstacles, prevail against their enemies and form the soviet socialistic society. The Bolshevik organization was Lenin's own creation, and in this sense Leninism and Bolshevism can be seen as one. The very idea of organization occupies an essential place in Leninism: organization of the revolutionary instrument, organization of the revolution itself, organization of the society to which the revolution gave birth. Lenin's contribution was much greater than his creation of the Bolshevik Party, the tool for making revolutions, which he brought to the victory of the October insurrection and to the foundation and development of the Soviet state.
October was the result of a concurrence of events and factors that were various: the world crisis set off by the war, the terrible condition into Russia was in, the collapse of the tsarist regime, the upsurge of the masses demanding better conditions and the inability of the provisional government to satisfy them, the exasperation left by the workers peasants and soldiers. Among this contradictory forces Leninism holds a substantial place. But Lenin did not make the Russian revolution; however, he did forge the Bolshevik Party. The Bolshevik organization published its first leaflet on 27 of February in 1917, which declared that "the job of the working class and the revolutionary army is to create a provisional revolutionary government which will lead the new regime, the new republican regime." It is certainly true that such condensed formulations take too little account of important details.
The Bolsheviks did not constitute a homogeneous group; willingness to follow the masses often failed them, and their radicalism was cut across and countered by tendencies of a different sort. During 1917 the Bolshevik party never looked like a party without opponents. There existed a great diversity of opinions within it, and the disagreements between the members were publicly known. However, there was a problem to unite its members around a tactic and a strategy that were common to all. But it confronted with an unexpected situation, with many and sudden changes and a dynamic the pace and scope of which took by surprise the most optimistic of revolutionaries. The Bolshevik party had no need to stimulate the masses between the revolution of February and that of October.
It organized their upsurge in several decisive situations, it reinforced their offensive by endowing action with a political outlook, and above all, it took upon itself leadership which ran counter to all slogans and paid no heed to any movements. This was why the masses and the party came together, why the proletariat identified itself with an organization that had become. The continuation of the imperialist war, according to Lenin's analysis, spelt economic ruin. The longer the war progressed the more severe the economic crisis would become and the more obvious would it appear to mass of the population that the bourgeois economic structure could not possibly rescue mankind from impending economic catastrophe on a prodigious scale. By May of 1917, Lenin reached the conclusion that Russia was already sliding into ruin.
Money had lost its value, the distributive mechanism had collapsed, essential goods were unobtainable and the whole structure of capitalism was in an advanced state of collapse. In June 1917, Lenin insisted that the situation had reached such an impasse that disaster was inevitable. In the autumn of 1917, Lenin's words were prophetic because it was precisely the disruption of industrial and agricultural production and the collapse of the railway network that brought hunger and bread queues to the cities and very considerably raised the revolutionary temperature. From the first days of the war, the barbarism and butchery was now being complemented by famine and economic crisis of unparalleled severity and intensiveness.
The effects both of war and economic collapse were bound to raise the level of revolutionary consciousness and then the knell of capitalism itself would be tolled. However, even in this situation there was no absolute certainty that a socialist revolution would occur or, even if it did, that it would be successful. The maturation of the objective subjective conditions for a socialist revolution was certainly necessary but still not sufficient for success. According to Lenin, the war had imposed upon all belligerent countries the necessity of eliminating much of the anarchy of capitalist production.
The state had more and more intruded itself as an agency in overall command of the capitalist economy, planning and coordinating its production and dictating its priorities through an increasingly complex system of controls. "Our aim is to achieve a socialist system of society, which, by eliminating the division of mankind into classes, by eliminating all exploitation of man by man and nation by nation, will inevitably eliminate the very possibility of war." (Lenin) The state had been obliged to intervene not merely in controlling the heights of the economy- the banks, the insurance agencies and the big capitalist monopolies- it had also intervened directly in the distributive process by inaugurating comprehensive schemes of rationing. Finally, the imperialist states had even assumed control over the allocation and distribution of labour by introducing universal labour conscription. It could therefore no longer be said that capitalism was anarchic and devoid of direction or plan. In its new phase of state monopoly capitalism it had developed into an enormously powerful instrument of political, economic, and military control over all of society. Lenin's case was that capitalism, in the final perfected form of regulated state monopoly capitalism, had itself introduced all the material prerequisites for socialism.
For the realization of socialism, however, the huge complex us of economic and political control mechanisms, which presently lay in the hands of capitalists and was directed in the interests of their profits, would have to be seized by popular organs of self-government and directed in the interests of the mass of the people. It was only through these organs of popular power that the productive energy of the masses could be mobilized. Only through them, according to Lenin, was it possible to prevent the wholesale fraud and plunder of the state which the capitalists were perpetrating. Control over industry and the banks, he repeatedly maintained, should in no way be confused with changes in the existing patterns of ownership. Only the machinery for the effective supervision of the economy would be taken over. This was undoubtedly the most important measure in Lenin's proposed package.
Lenin's plan for taking over the ready made economic machinery of bourgeois dominance had its observed side in his recommendations the political machinery of coercion exercised by the capitalist state. As 1917 progressed and as Lenin became more and more insistent upon the need to capture the economic mechanisms of control, so he more and more rejected that the popular mass should take over the political or coercive mechanisms which the bourgeoisie had also created as vehicles of their domination. Lenin's rapid shift in this connection is unmistakable and dramatic, and in his view, state monopoly capitalism had created the potential for an immediate transition to socialist construction, but only the potential. Whether that potential would be realized or whether it would atrophy depended now on whether the organs of popular government seized the initiative and grasped the opportunities which the war and the development of state monopoly capitalism had produced. Either they would go forward to smash capitalism or military state monopoly capitalism would rally to smash them.
He insisted that there could be no middle course, no possibility of a peaceful cohabitation of the two, for they each stood in flat contradiction to the other. One of the decisive elements in Lenin's adaptation of Marxism was the substitution of the idea of an alliance of the working class with the peasantry. After the October revolution he showed constant concern to save this alliance. The Russian revolution gave faithful expression to Lenin's concern to conciliate the peasantry. He saw the final victory of socialism as subject to two conditions: success of the proletarian revolution in the West, and agreement between the proletariat, which was exercised its dictatorship that was, holds state power, and the majority of the peasant population. The dominance of the Russian revolution and the enforcement of the rebels' policy had the following results: i.
Increase of the living standards ii. Reduction of the illiteracy level (there were about 100 million people illiterate, which means the 70% of the population, while the tsars were in the throne. They almost acquitted complete elimination of illiteracy with a greater percentage of university graduates. iii. Russia as a state under the tsars' authority was at the edge of an economic collapse. There was a big national debt corruption as well as economical and social sordid poverty.
The war against Germany made the situation even worse. The governing of the state by the rebels not only resulted in the increase productivity and wealth but also, assisted the U. S. S. R after the end of the second World War to ascend in a great power. iv.
Increase of the social formation of a social state. It must not be forgotten that in socialism and its evolution - communism - the human being is the focus of its policy. v. Prosperity of the civilization and the arts.
vi. And finally, starts the reconstruction of the new-socialistic system. Nationalization of the industry, the banks, and trade. Commerce with reconstruction of the trade and of the enterprises on a new basis. Capitalism and imperialism still possess immense power for tyranny and destruction throughout the world. Communism has not been built anywhere, and in Russia itself they are very far from having established a socialist society, in which coercion would be, by Lenin's own definition, on its way out.
Although, it can be said that the Russian revolution was successful, because capitalism has been abolished in Russia by the October revolution, it has not been restored there, and the country's economic strength has multiplied tenfold, Soviet democracy has not been realized, and the arbitrary power of the state, which Marx and Lenin attacked, as well as bureaucracy, seem more firmly established than ever. ReferencesBalibar, E. (1977) "On the Dictatorship of the Proletariat", New Left BooksElster, J. (1995) Karl Marx: A Reader, Cambridge university press Harding, N. (1981) Lenin's Political Thought, The Macmillan Press LTDLoewenstein, J. (1976) Marx Against Marxism, Routledge & Kegan Paul Liebman, M.
(1975) Leninism Under Lenin, Ebenezer Baylis And Son LTD Lukes, S. (1985) Marxism And Morality, Oxford University pressUrondo, G, G. (1977) Lenin And The Cultural Revolution, The Harvester Press Limited web.