The Russian Revolution in a Global Perspective, 1917-1928
Wednesday, 6 December 2017, 6 – 7pm
Stephen Smith, All Soul’s College, Oxford, “The Russian Revolution in a Global Perspective, 1917-1928.
The Bolsheviks seized power in October 1917 in the conviction that this would trigger a revolution that would overthrow global capitalism and commence the transition to socialism. The Bolsheviks looked to Europe, and certainly social turbulence convulsed central, southern and eastern Europe between 1918 and 1923. However, the depth of revolutionary crisis in countries such as Germany and Italy was never as great as in Russia in 1917, and insurrections of the type that had put the Bolsheviks into power failed. The lecture argues that despite the Bolsheviks’ conviction that the significance of their revolution lay in the promise of workers’ power, its principal significance lay in its challenge to colonialism and imperialism, a challenge emblematized in the Congress of the Peoples of the East in September 1920. The lecture argues that it was in Asia (Persia, Korea, China, India) that the impact of the October Revolution was most enduring, at least in the immediate aftermath of October.
Steve Smith is a senior research fellow at All Souls College Oxford and a professor in the Faculty of Modern History in the University. He is a widely published historian of modern Russia and modern China and his most recent book is Russia in Revolution: An Empire in Crisis, 1890-1927 (Oxford University Press, 2017).
Campus Location: Trinity Long Room Hub
Room: Neill Lecture Theatre
Event Type: Lectures and Seminars, Public
Type of Event: One-time event
Audience: Undergrad, Postgrad, Alumni, Faculty & Staff, Public