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L-15 Part III Era of Great Reforms (1) 1. Emancipation of the Serfs.

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Presentation on theme: "L-15 Part III Era of Great Reforms (1) 1. Emancipation of the Serfs."— Presentation transcript:

1 L-15 Part III Era of Great Reforms (1) 1. Emancipation of the Serfs

2 Introduction A.Historiography B.Sources C.Themes

3 1. Emancipation

4 A. Watershed 1.Cataclysmic Event 2.Turning point: Toward a new social order 3.Comparison of pre-reform and post- reform 4.Russia’s 1861 as France’s 1789

5 B. Emancipation: Impediments 1.Great power status 2.Fear of social turmoil 3.Serfdom too integral 4.Fiscal: how to finance?

6 C. Why Emancipation? Four Theories 1.Imperatives of Economic Modernization 2.Revolutionary Situation 3.Triumph of Liberal (Western) Humanitarianism 4.Military Defeat: Crimean War

7 C. Why Emancipation? Four Theories 1.Imperative of Economic Modernization a.Arguments Nobility disenchanted Crisis of serf economy b.Critiques Little evidence State disinterest in industrialization Contrary evidence: serfdom had adapted

8 C. Why Emancipation 2. “Revolutionary Situation” a. Thesis: preempt social revolution Police reports on peasant “mood” & expectations Upsurge in peasant disturbances Alarmist reports of nobility b. Critiques Police exaggeration, poor information Upsurge followed public decision Fear among squires, not government officials

9 Police Reports on Peasant Mood Rumors about changes in their status, which began to circulate about there years ago throughout the whole Empire, have created tension between landlords and serfs, for whom this matter represents a question of life or death.” (1857) “As the landlords put it, the peasants have stretched out their hands and will simply not be pacified. Most of them understand freedom in the vulgar sense of being free to do whatever they wish, with no laws or restrictions; and they are convinced that the land and their houses belong to them.” (1858)

10 Police Reports on Peasant Mood First Serf: “They say that we will soon be free.” Second Serf: “Probably like the state peasants.” First Serf: “No, that’s just it—completely free. They won’t demand either recruits or taxes; and there won’t be any kind of authorities. We will run things ourselves.”

11 Upsurge in Peasant Disorders YearsTotalAnnual Average

12 C. Why Emancipation? 3. Triumph of Western Humanitarianism a. Argument Widespread dissemination of values, ideas Strong impact on gosudarstvenniki b. Critique Ideas around for long time, but why now? Actually not shared by the rank-and-file nobility

13 Police Report on Gentry Attitudes toward Serfs (1857) “The majority of the gentry believe that our peasant is too uncultured to understand civil law; that, in a state of freedom, he would be more vicious than any wild beast; that disorders, plundering, and murder are almost inevitable; and that in many provinces—especially along the Volga—the terrible times of the Pugachev Rebellion are recalled.”

14 C. Why Emancipation? 4. Crimean War Debacle a. Motives Psychological shock of defeat Wartime memoranda b. Why Focus on Serfdom? Barrier to universal military training Lack of infrastructure, esp. railways Key to social and economic backwardness Cause of state insolvency, financial collapse and defeat c. Larger Ideology: Emancipation (raskreposhchenie) of all society

15 Wartime Memoranda (Zapiski) Westerner Kavelin: “Most people are convinced that Russia’s natural conditions should make it one of the richest countries in the world; yet it would be hard to find another state where there is less capital, where poverty is so ubiquitous among all the classes of people.” Slavophile Iurii Samarin: “We were vanquished not by the foreign armies of the Western alliance, but by our own internal weaknesses, which are due to serfdom.”

16 D. Actors 1.Arbitrator: Alexander II 2.Abolitionists: a.Military b.Liberal gosudarstvenniki (N. Miliutin et al.) c.Courtiers (GD Konstantin Nikolaevich, GD Elena Pavlovna d.Compliant officialdom: Rostovtsev and Panin e.Obshchestvo: public opinion 3.Anti-abolitionists a.Bureaucratic elites b.Police c.Provincial Gentry

17 Alexander II

18 Praise of “Tsar-Liberator”

19 Alexander II: Visits Peasant Hut

20 S.S. Lanskoi

21 Nikolai Miliutin

22 General Ia. E. Rostovtsev

23 Viktor Nikitich Panin

24 Iurii F. Samarin

25 Grand Duchess Elena Pavlovna

26 Grand Duke Konstantin Nikolaevich

27 E. Politics of Emancipation 1.Emancipation denied (1855-Mar. 1856) 2.Commitment, secrecy (Mar Nov. 1857) 3.Engineering Assent (Nov ) a.Nazimov Rescript and aftermath (Nov 1857) b.Public response 4.Reform from Above ( ) a.SPB: Main Committee, Editorial Committee b.Gentry Rebellion: provincial deputies to SPB c.Final Revisions, Promulgation 1861

28 State Council: Final Review of Emancipation

29 Emancipation Proclamation

30 F. Terms of Emancipation 1. Volia (personal freedom) 2.Land a.3-stage mechanism: inventories, “temporary obligations”, and “Redemption” b.Land shares and terms 3.Commune 4.Conclusions

31 Leo Tolstoy as Peace Mediator

32 Tolstoy as Peace Arbitrator

33 Tver: Peace Arbitrators Subjected to Administrative Penalties

34 Ustavnaia Gramota: Peasant- Squire Agreement

35 Cut-offs: Land Shares Lost by Former Serfs AreaNumber of Provinces Average Share of Land Lost (%) Non-Black Soil1510 Black-Soil2126 All3618

36 Geographic Patterns of Cutoffs Decreased: Yellow: under 20% Pink: 20-40% Brown: over 40% Increased: Green: under 20% Purple: over 20%

37 Over-valued Land Shares Area1860 Value (millions of rubles) Redemption Value (millions of rubles Difference (millions of rubles) Percent increase Black Soil % Non-Black Soil %

38 G. Reaction to Emancipation 1.Radical intelligentsia 2.Nobility: from dismay to liberalism 3.Peasantry: from disbelief to disobedience

39 Peasant Disorders YearNumber of Violent Disorders ,

40 Anton Petrov and the Peasants of Bezdna

41 H. Extension to Other Peasant Categories

42 Peasant Categories: Different Deals CategoryAverage Allotment (acres) Serfs4.0 Crown peasants14.0 State peasants19.9

43 I. Conclusions 1.Decision by the state and for the state 2.Strong constraints (fiscal, social, political) 3.New politics 4.Long, complex, conflicted process 5.Political, not economic, decision 6.Gradualism: adoption, implementation


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