|THE RUSSIAN EMPIRE IN TRANSCAUCASIA: AGRARIAN POLICY OF THE LATE 19TH-EARLY 20TH CENTURIES (SOCIOLOGY OF HISTORICALLY PROSES)|
Ph.D. (Hist.), Associate Professor
Baku State University,
|Abstract. The author analyzes the Russian Empire's agrarian policy in Transcaucasia at the turn of the 20th century and alsoexamines the factors that made peasant reform and the new rules of land allotment in¬evitable.The reform, however, did nothing to improve the life of peasants: they paid for the allotted land with labor service.The colonial powers tried hard to preserve the old order of things in the agrarian sector.The situation in Transcaucasia remained vague even when the reform based on the Regulations of 14 May, 1870 began; the local official structures and top bureaucrats spared no effort to assure the peasants that as soon as they redeemed their land they would no longer be tied to their landlords. The Council of Ministers gathered three times to discuss the Notes submitted on 22 November, 1905, which outlined the conditions on which the relations of dependence and temporary obligations could be discontinued by making the peasants owners of land without redemption payments and by shifting to the state treasury the burden of redemption payment to the landlords. The second draft was amended accordingly. In fact, before the second draft was submitted, the Viceroy and the Ministry of Internal Affairs had agreed that the land should not be transferred to the peasants free of charge: this looked like a flagrant violation of the right of ownership; this explains the second (less radical) draft. On 19 December, 1912, the State Council approved the draft with no considerable changes; on 20 December it was signed by Emperor Nicholas II and became a law. On the one hand, it presupposed that the czarist government would insist on its agrarian policy started when the region was united with Russia.
|Key words: The Russian Empire, Transcaucasia, agrarian policy, village, reform, landlords, redemption payments, land allotments, peace mediators.
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