The Age of Absolutism Presentation By: Tanya Lai & Elaine Nguyen
Question Analyze the major ways through which Czar Peter the Great (1689-1725) sought to reform his society and its institutions in order to strengthen Russia and its position in Europe. (1989)
Introduction The Age of Absolutism was from the late 16 th to the early 18 th century, a period in which monarchs attempted to be the dominant power over their nations and have complete control over all aspects of the lives of their subjects.
During his reign from 1682-1725, Czar Peter (I) of Russia sought to modernize his society and its institutions politically, economically, religiously, and socially, in order to strengthen Russia and its position in Europe. Thesis
TS: In order to strengthen Russia's government, Czar Peter the Great sought to reform his position of power politically. Body #1
E1: Czar Peter, looking to reorganize administration within the government, established a modern bureaucracy of "colleges." C1: By establishing bureaus to oversee matters of government, Czar Peter was able to achieve a sense of organization, strengthening the power of his government.
E2: Seeking the aid of other European monarchs to go against the Ottoman Empire, Czar Peter set out on a journey across Europe with a large Russian group of delegates known as the “Grand Embassy.” C2: Though his attempt was unsuccessful, his journey was an effort to strengthen Russia by aiding in the absolutism of Russia.
CS: Politically reforming society by reorganizing administration within the government and seeking aid from other European monarchs to strengthen the absolutism of the Czar, Peter would help strengthen Russia's position in Europe.
TS: Czar Peter, understanding the need to enhance Russia's power within Europe, attempted to reform Russia economically. Body #2
E1: As a way to develop the economy, Czar Peter encouraged a more western orientation by adopting the western calendar, issuing Russia’s first newspaper, and improving women’s social status, bringing Russia on the same level as western Europe. C1: Czar Peter was able to encourage a more economically successful society, by allowing business to grow using advertisement to seek employees or allowing women to participate in the economy in Russia.
E2: For Russia to trade with the West, it would need a year-round warm water port, which would lead to Peter’s Great Northern War with Sweden, as well as the Ottoman Empire. C2: Securing a port on the Baltic Sea and allowing him to use the navy, Russia would be allowed to compete as a European power.
CS: Modernizing Russia economically would help fulfill Peter’s wish of Russia turning into a strong and prosperous nation-state.
TS: In other efforts to westernize Russia, Peter the Great reformed the relationship of the church and state. Body #3
E1: In order to redefine the church and state, Peter eliminated the Old Believers who opposed his attempt to westernize Russia, and he replaced them with a government department that would follow his secular requirements. C1: Peter replaced the position of the patriarch with the Holy Synod, a group of ten clergy men under secular power, which allowed him to have control over the Russian Orthodox Church.
E2:During his reign, Peter implemented a law that required a man to be over 50 before he could join a monastery. C2:By implementing this new law, Peter was able to receive more men into his army. This reform regarding the Russian Orthodox Church not only strengthened Peter’s absolutism, but it also strengthen Russia’s position in Europe.
CS: Using western ideas to reform Russia religiously, Peter allowed his nation to become stronger.
TS: Through social reforms, Czar Peter also sought to modernize and westernize Russia in an effort to strengthen it. Body #4
E1: Peter implemented westernization by cutting off the long beards and long sleeves of the boyars. C1: He believed that by making the society more western in appearance, they would be successful in their attempted reforms to increase Russia’s power within Europe.
E2: Peter created the Table of Ranks, which was a formula for determining the status of Russia’s society. C2: With the use of this new system, a person's social ranking was equal to his rank in the army or the government, not his position in the nobility. This, in turn, caused people to work more for the state in order to receive a better social standing.
CS: Bringing Russia into the modern world and making it like the rest of Europe, Czar Peter reformed Russia socially.
Conclusion Therefore, in order to enhance its power, Russia and its position in Europe, Czar Peter of Russia sought to modernize his society and its institution politically, economically, religiously, and socially.