Advisors to Tsar Nicholas II

1904 | RUSSIA

SUMMARY

“I will preserve the principle of Autocracy as firmly and unflinchingly as my late father.”  - Tsar Nicholas II

A crucial question loomed over Russia at the turn of the 20th century: how to resolve the paradox of empire and modernity. The 19th century solution, Alexander II’s emancipation of the serfs, sent shock waves throughout the socio-economic layers of the country. While it fundamentally uprooted the old order hierarchy, stratified poverty became further exacerbated by destabilizing urbanization and industrialization. Nicholas II possessed enormous political power but was an incredibly malleable figure, susceptible to a wide range of influences. Representing various members of the aristocracy, military, government, and civil society, delegates will convene as informal advisory meetings beginning in the end of 1904 to guide the actions of the Tsar. The principal topics consist of conducting and concluding the Russo-Japanese War, responding to social and political upheavals that agitate for radical transformations, balancing the effects of industrialization and agricultural inequality, maintaining foreign ties as well as controlling the domestic diversity of the empire, and above all, leading one of Europe’s last absolute monarchies into the modern age.

 

TOPICS OF DEBATE

1. Russo-Japanese War

2. Agricultural and Industrial Growing Pains 

3. Monarchy in Crisis

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