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Defenders of the MotherlandThe Tsarist Elite in Revolutionary Russia$
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Matthew Rendle

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199236251

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199236251.001.0001

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Landowners

Landowners

Chapter:
(p.84) 4 Landowners
Source:
Defenders of the Motherland
Author(s):

Matthew Rendle (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199236251.003.0005

This chapter describes the emergence of a ‘landed movement’ during 1917. The agrarian policies of the Provisional Government were broadly acceptable, but landowners reacted to the steady increase in the peasant movement by forming their own local unions to defend the right to own land. In May, the nationwide Union of Landowners, which had existed since 1916, was revived to unite the numerous local bodies. The union's new, liberally‐inclined leadership targeted peasant landowners to broaden their support, and these landowners quickly formed the vast majority of members. However, as rural unrest gathered pace, the union faced several problems. The sheer scale of the unrest overwhelmed its own size, whilst it struggled to prevent the government from introducing policies that undermined landownership. It also faced growing opposition from socialist parties, and its peasant members proved susceptible to socialist propaganda. All of this led to increasing disillusionment by August 1917.

Keywords:   Landowners, landownership, Union of Landowners, peasants, rural unrest, Provisional Government, agrarian policies, socialist propaganda

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