1917 Revolution (08:03)
Russia was a tsarist monarchy until the revolution led by the Bolsheviks under Vladimir Lenin. Writer Maxim Gorky was friends with Lenin and a key member of the revolution.
Russian Provincial Government (04:51)
Protesters stormed the duma in the Tauride Palace of St. Petersburg. A provincial government consisted of officials from the duma and Soviet protesters. The Soviets were divided into many groups; the Bolsheviks were the smallest and most radical.
Lenin's Rise to Power (05:05)
Lenin returned from exile in April 1917. He wanted to do away with former duma members and have the entire government be Soviet.
Uniting Russian workers (06:51)
Factory workers joined the revolution because of unemployment and low wages. The soldiers, who were mostly from the peasant class, wanted fair land distribution. Lenin called for an immediate end to Russia's involvement in World War I.
Lenin's Balancing Act (04:54)
Lenin provoked the people against the provincial government and then hold them back to control the speed of the revolution. In July 1917, provincial government supporters shot at Soviet protesters and more than 100 died. The provincial government began arresting Bolsheviks and Lenin went into hiding.
Russian Political Maneuvering (06:22)
Left-leaning Soviets refused to join the violence against the Bolsheviks and were forced out of the provincial government. After a failed coup by the military, the Soviets, including the Bolsheviks, reestablished in the government.
October Revolution (07:37)
The Soviets overthrew the provincial government in October 1917. Lenin told Russian workers they controlled their own fate while he also turned the government into a dictatorship. The Cheka was created to arrest the Bolsheviks’ political opponents.
Communist Russia (07:22)
Lenin's goal was to spread communism to free the world. After a few failed attempts, the Bolsheviks turned their attention to worsening conditions within Russia.
Credits: 1917: The Making of a Revolution (00:54)
Credits: 1917: The Making of a Revolution
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