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First Socialist Society

This research provides a condensed account of a portion of Hoskings's First Socialist Society. The background of the October 1917 Revolution was the abortive 1905 revolution, during which proletarian and military factions established a soviet in St. Petersburg (called Petrograd, by 1917). That form of organization was revived in the city when the tsar abdicated, and those factions reemerged in that city and other cities in 1917 to run the urban infrastructure. However, factional political leaders formerly members of the Duma and representing Kadets and Mensheviks organized a Provisional Government for reformed national governance, pending formal reconstitution (35).

Initially these two large factions had a symbiotic relationship. That is because the former Duma membership did not have armed support, except from the officer corps and because the new urban soviets, composed mainly of nonelite masses except in leadership cadres, did not have organizational political skills (36). Each faction knew the other's weaknesses, though the national political faction turned out to be more vulnerable because it was unable to be effective. For one thing, Russia as a nation-state was still one of the Allies in the Great War, which was bleeding resources and which was marked by rebellious grumbling among ranks suffering from lack of wartime materiel. For another, the Provisional Government could not actually implement on a grand scale any reforms that it promised, such as land redistribution and social equity: Previous governments had promised property to peasants who enlisted, while other noncombatant peasants asserted new claims to property (37-8).

Political factionalism inside Russia was inevitable, though chaos hung in the balance (38. The first step was taken by the Petrograd Soviet. Refraining from bilateral peace rhetoric with Germany and the Austro-Hungarian Empire, it tried to form an international coalition of socialists to pressure all...

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First Socialist Society. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 12:16, March 31, 2020, from