Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The Narod

The radical Populists, the Narodniki, in the late nineteenth century made an attempt at culturally and nationally redefining the nation.  They called this, “The Going to the People Movement” because they themselves as rebels would go out and seek those living in The Narod (the peasantry) and attempt to bridge that gap that society had created between the educated and the peasants. They set out to penetrate village culture and engage the peasants in order to teach them and maybe educate them. The Populists had good intentions because in their mind they were going to The Narod to help the people. However, the people in the narod did not want their help. All of a sudden their villages are filled with privileged people from the cities and they are trying to change their lifestyles and tell them how to live. Trying to tell them that what they have been doing for centuries is wrong and yet saying that they are only attempting to help. No one wants to be treated like they are beneath someone else and especially not in their own comfort zone. The villages they had once seen as escapes from the gap between them and the people of the cities were now torn down and they feared the bridge just as much as the Tsar. The Tsar did not like the idea of the Populists traveling to the narod because he knew their true intentions were to incite the people of The Narod into a rebellion. The people in the cities did not have enough numbers and they needed more soldiers. A rebellion would not succeed without both the peasant and the working class. It is safe to say the Tsar always gets his way and in the end he ended up arresting all the Populists he could find and it was rather easy as the villagers did not want them in their homes any more than the Tsar did. The Narod was a gap that the workers could not bridge yet and there revolution that they were eager for would have to wait.

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