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‘After the first act’ (4 February, 1905)

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Chapter Summary

In Petersburg the uprising of the proletariat was spontaneous, and Father Gapon gave the signal for it. Taken as a whole, the Russian Revolution likewise acquired in the very first days following the bloodbath of 22 January the marked character of a political uprising of the proletariat. For the first time, the Russian proletariat has entered the political stage as an independent power; it received its historical baptism in blood during the butchery of 22 January and has joined the international family of the fighting proletariat as a new active member. The events in Petersburg have imparted a profound lesson of revolutionary optimism. Tsarism has received its inner death blow. The pressing need in Russia is to assist the masses after the first struggles by enlightening, stimulating and encouraging them. This task can only be fulfilled in Russia by Social Democracy that rises above every particular moment of the struggle.

Keywords: Father Gapon; Petersburg; proletariat; Russian Revolution; Social Democracy; Tsarism



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