Russian history is full of recurrences which are not fortuitous, but the product of underlying causes that have changed little over the centuries. In this book, W.E. Mosse offers a view of the counterpart of the recent perestroika movement from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He examines the causes and the results of the reform movement that worked for change before 1914 - in particular the reforms associated with Tsar Alexander II, Witte and Stolypin. In the process he goes some way towards putting the reforms of the 1980s and 1990s into an historical perspective.
Introduction: the background; the old order. Part 1 Aleksandr II: the "tsar liberator"; perils of glasnost - the failure of "liberal" autocracy. Part 2 Loris-Melikov: the first crisis of the regime and the failure of "liberal" bureaucracy; interlude - the great reaction. Part 3 Perestroika in the age of imperialism: Witte's first perestroika; Witte's first perestroika - an appraisal; interim balance. Part 4 Perestroika under stress - the revolution of 1905: "time of troubles" - the run-up; Witte's second perestroika - the imperial Duma; Witte's second perestroika - towards a new regime. Part 5 P.A. Stolypin: Stolypin and the Duma; fruits of perestroika - the Witte legacy. Conclusion - the anatomy of tsarist perestroika.