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Civil rights was one of the main issues concerning Russia during the second half of the 19th century. Alexander the second began implementing many reforms in an attempt to improve social well being. Many of these reforms were focused on topics such as education, judicial, military, and government. However, the biggest social change brought about during this time period was the emancipation of around 20 million privately owned serfs

Military Conflict

The Crimean War (1854–1856)-shattered the image of an invincible Russia, but more importantly, it ended the Concert of Europe. For about twenty-five years, instability prevailed in European affairs, and foreign policy increasingly became an instrument of domestic policy.

Important Leaders

Alexander The Second (1818-1881) -Russian Czar who emancipated the Serfs and became known as Alexander the Liberator. Known as a liberal leader who initiated many reform movements.

Alexander The Third (1845-1994) -Replaced his father Alexander ll and initiated a period of counter reform. Known as the peace keeper on account of no wars occurring during his reign.


Russia's vast amount of rural land and diverse people led to many overachieving issues that would follow it into the 20th century. Russia's lacking infrastructure led to a relatively late period of industrialization and poor government policies led to compounding social issues that led to civil unrest as nationalism was continually suppressed. More tensions arose as a group intellectuals arose and pushed for a movement that centered upon eastern orthodox ideas and went away from the views of westernization garnered by previous rulers such as Peter the Great.

Personal Commentary

Russia goal to emulate the successful powers of Eastern Europe contributed to many of its issues in the second half of the 19th century.


Who was known as "The Liberator"?

Who was known as "The Peace keeper"?

What was the biggest outcome resulting from the social reforms?