Ivan Sablin deposited Russia in the Global Parliamentary Moment, 1905–1918: Between a Subaltern Empire and an Empire of Subalterns (Locating the Global: Spaces, Networks and Interactions from the Seventeenth to the Twentieth Century, ed. by Holger Weiss. Berlin: De Gruyter Oldenbourg, 2020, pp. 257–282) in the group ASEEES Convention on ASEEES Commons 2 years, 3 months ago
The chapter analyzed the debates on parliamentarism in the late Russian Empire and revolutionary Russia and explored how the idea of parliament helped intellectuals locate Russia globally. The establishment of the legislative State Duma and the adoption of the Fundamental Laws of the Russian Empire during the Revolution of 1905–1907 seemed to make Russia a constitutional state. Few intellectuals, however, viewed the Duma as a parliament equal to its Western counterparts. Despite their criticism of the Duma, numerous liberal and moderate socialist and nationalist thinkers generally supported parliamentarism, seeing Russian transformations as part of the perceived parliamentary universalism. Right and left radicals, by contrast, questioned the very necessity of a parliament. The right argued that Russia was self-sufficient and did not need Western democracy; the left rejected parliaments, claiming them a part of class exploitation and oppressive state machinery, and called for direct rule of the toilers to represent an alternative democratic modernity. The Bolshevik–Left Socialist Revolutionary coup in October 1917 and the dissolution of the All-Russian Constituent Assembly in January 1918 marked a halt in Russia’s participation in global parliamentary developments, which institutionally encompassed, inter alia, Persia, the Ottoman Empire, and the Qing Empire (and the Republic of China) in the 1900s/1910s. Conceptually, it marked an end of the global parliamentary moment, as the Bolshevik–Left Socialist Revolutionary regime became the first practical take on non-parliamentary modernity.