3 Lecture - seizure of power.docx

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3 Lecture Seizure of Power, Russia, Italy and Germany
1917-1921 Bolsheviks consolidate their power
1922-1925 Mussolini comes to power, finally becomes a dictator
1933-1934 Nazi regime Hitler becomes Chancellor of Germany, then makes constitutional changes
Revolution/reaction communism and fascism are very closely related
Nations going through democratization (check the power of the absolute monarch, expanding the right
to vote, media to branch out, leaders were from lower class) and modernization (technological
advancement, industrialization, political unification, innovation).
Key Themes
The failure of democracy how and why
Lenin and the Bolsheviks: revolution or counter-revolution*
Italian fascism: revolution or restoration
The rise of Nazism: a German Sonderweg (unique power)
What is it about these three countries that explains the progress to totalitarian control. France and
Britain had movements similar to those happening in Germany, but it doesn’t take root in these
Structure (long term factors) + contingency (short term, unpredictable, ex. 9/11) = historical event
The Russia of the Czars crisis autocracy, authoritarian power
The revolution was not one made by the masses. It was an urban, elite movement.
Duma; 1906 there was going to be an elected legislature.
The problems of Russia (ineptness of Nicholas did not become apparent until things surfaced such as
the war efforts going poorly (WWI and Russo-Japanese war), starving people, riots.
The czar is not overthrown by the Bolsheviks bread riots, mutiny of police/army, Duma
government (provisional government). Bolsheviks overthrow DUMA. This sparks a civil war.
**DUMA coming to power is a democratic revolution. The Bolsheviks coming to power is an
illegitimate, violent overthrow of the duma, this is the counter revolution. In order to make it fit,
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