Utopia Dystopia, the Russian Revolution One Hundred Years On
A century after the Russian Revolution of 1917, its driving forces and its legacy, and indeed even its start and end, are still the subject of debate. It encompassed two key episodes in 1917, the February and October revolutions. The February revolution (known as such because of Russia’s use of the Julian calendar until February 1918) began on March 8, 1917. This led to the collapse of the imperial rule by the last Tsar of Russia, Nicholas II, and the establishment of a democratic provisional government. The October revolution (which in the Julian calendar began on October 24th and 25th) began on November 6th and 7th led by Vladimir Lenin, leader of the Bolshevik party, and overthrew the provisional government to establish the first Marxist state in the world. It generated the dominant model of revolution for the remainder of the 20th century, engendered communist parties in many countries and was exported to much of Eastern Europe in the former of Soviet hegemony after victory in 1945, and helped shape the process of decolonisation.
As we journey through Ireland’s decade of commemorations and move ever closer to considering the complex war of independence and civil war that preceded the formation of the Irish State, this lecture series will reflect on the aftermath of the Russian Revolution right up to today and how it changed the course of world history at many levels.
The Utopia Dystopia lecture series has been organised by Trinity College Dublin’s Department of Russian and Slavonic Studies and Department of History in association with the Trinity Long Room Hub Arts and Humanities Research Institute.