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The Emergence of Ethnic Politics in 1905: The League for the Attainment of Full Rights for the Jews of Russia

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The legalization of political activity in Tsarist Russia in 1905 created the opportunity for Jewish liberals to enter the public arena as proponents of civic and political rights for the Jews of the realm. However, unlike Jewish liberals in western and central Europe, Russian-Jewish liberals also called for the extension of national cultural rights for the Jews of Russia in addition to that of individual emancipation. They formed the League for the Attainment of Full Rights for the Jews of Russia in March 1905 and proceeded to prepare for the upcoming elections for the proposed assembly to be elected by the people later that year. However, the violent pogroms that broke out in the fall of 1905 generated a more nationalist minded-agenda as these liberals found themselves in competition with both Jewish nationalists and Jewish socialists for the attention of the people.


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