Turning point in government plan

From yesterday’s lesson. 1881 ?

Turning points plan

Oct 17 – from the revision session. How is it different ?


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For the two of you who could not make history society

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Enrichment – Tragedy or triumph? Russians agonise over how to mark 1917 revolutions

3562If you click here you will get to  article discussing how Russia is considering how to mark the centenary of the Russian Revolution in 1917.

“1917 is problematic. On the one hand, the Soviet state that came from the revolution was the one that won the war and whose military and scientific achievements Putin thinks should be venerated. But on the other hand Putin has elevated “stability” to being one of the key tenets of his rule, and as such celebrating a revolution goes against the very grain of his political philosophy”.

Have a read and see what you think.

Mr Kydd.

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The essay planning board work



Mr Kydd.

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Half Term work

Please click here for your half term work and securing video on Alexander II’s reforms.

Mr Kydd.

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Enrichment – Russia’s most unruly ruler ?


Year Thirteen,

Great to all of you at History Society today. We will finish off Ivan the Terrible next week. Perhaps Empress Anna Ioannovna was not so brutal, but this article suggests that she was certainly more of a party girl; as well as another true autocratic ruler.

“On March 8, a coup d’état headed by Anna’s most trusted retainers rounded up members of the Supreme Privy Council. Anna shredded the contracts before their eyes, and sentenced them all to death or exile. With the power of the Russian throne consolidated, Anna was officially crowned Empress of Russia on April 28, 1730. Empress Anna was protective of her newfound position to the point of paranoia. This led to the dreaded revival of the Secret Search Chancellery. A secret police force beholden only to Anna herself, they bore full authority to kill or torture any political opponents to the throne.”

How do all this relate to our A Level course ? Well, think about our timeline today. Perhaps repression was the only way to effectively rule this “prison of peoples”.

Mr Kydd.

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Introduction materials


Electronic versions of the materials used today ( from this website ).



Mr Kydd.


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Lavrenti Beria Executed on this day in 1953

Lavrenti_Beria_Stalins_familyIf you click here you will get to Richard Cavendish’s 2003 article in History Today describing the fate of the hated Georgian. I have included a paragraph below…

“At a hastily convened meeting of the Presidium, Khrushchev launched a blistering attack on Beria, accusing him of being a cynical careerist, long in the pay of British intelligence, and no true Communist believer. Beria was taken aback and said, ‘What’s going on, Nikita?’, and Khrushchev told him he would soon find out. The veteran Molotov and others chimed in against Beria and Khrushchev put a motion for his instant dismissal. Before a vote could be taken, the panicky Malenkov pressed a button on his desk as the pre-arranged signal to Marshal Zhukov and a group of armed officers in a nearby room. They immediately burst in, seized Beria and manhandled him away…”

Have a read and see what you think…

Mr Kydd.

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The assassination of Alexander II – understanding turning points in government

Attentat_mortal_Alexander_II_(1881)Well almost all…

Little Heath Upper Sixth students,

You will soon be discussing the importance of turning points within the 109 years of your course. The fate of Alexander II is very noteworthy – click here for a 45 minute discussion from Radio 4’s In Our Time series. The programme description follows.

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the assassination of Tsar Alexander II. On 1st March 1881, the Russian Tsar, Alexander II, was travelling through the snow to the Winter Palace in St Petersburg. An armed Cossack sat with the coach driver, another six Cossacks followed on horseback and behind them came a group of police officers in sledges. It was the day that the Tsar, known for his liberal reforms, had signed a document granting the first ever constitution to the Russian people.But his journey was being watched by a group of radicals called ‘Narodnaya Volya’ or ‘The People’s Will’. On a street corner near the Catherine Canal, they hurled the first of their bombs to halt the Tsar’s iron-clad coach. When Alexander ignored advice and ventured out onto the snow to comfort his dying Cossacks, he was killed by another bomber who took his own life in the blast.

  • Why did they kill the reforming Tsar?
  • What was the political climate that inspired such extreme acts?
  • And could this have been the moment that the Russian state started an inexorable march towards revolution?

With Orlando Figes, Professor of History at Birkbeck College, University of London; Dominic Lieven, Professor of Russian Government, London School of Economics; Catriona Kelly, Professor of Russian, Oxford University


Mr Kydd.

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Closing Post

thatsallfolksAs I am no longer teaching this course I will not be posting on these Russia pages from now on. I will however leave them open in case they are of use to anyone.


Mr Kydd.

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