HOW MUCH OF A THREAT WERE THE SOCIAL DEMOCRATS TO THE TSARIST REGIME?
4. The Liberals There was never a single Liberal Party in tsarist Russia. Liberalism is a term that has been applied to describe those groups who genuinely wanted political or social change, but believed this was possible through reforming rather than destroying the tsarist system. The development of the urban economy, the educational and legal systems and public systems had generated a growing number of managers, engineers, clerks, lawyers, doctors, teachers, journalists etc. In short, a growing middle class. These people were in favour of a western-style constitutionalism. There was also a strong national element in Russian liberalism. National minorities viewed the Liberal movement as a means of expressing their wish to be independent of Russian imperial control. The two principle Liberal groups that came into prominence in the pre-1914 period were the Octobrists and the Kadets.