The program of the Socialist Revolutionaries (1905)


In 1905 the Socialist Revolutionary party (SRs) drafted a political manifesto, outlining its objectives:


“The Socialist Revolutionary Party of Russia views its task as an organic, component part of a universal struggle of labour against the exploitation of human dignity, against all barriers that prevent its development into social forms, and conducts it in the spirit of general interests of that struggle in ways that are determined by concrete conditions of Russian reality.

Since the process of the transformation of Russia is led by non-socialist forces, the Socialist Revolutionary Party, on the basis of the above principles will advocate, defend, and seek by its revolutionary struggle the following reforms:

In the matters of politics:

The establishment of a democratic republic with broad autonomy for oblasts and communes, both urban and rural.

Increased acceptance of federal principles in relations between various nationalities, granting them unconditional right to self-determination.

Direct, secret, equal, and universal right to vote for every citizen above 20 years of age regardless of sex, religion, or national origin.

Proportional representation; direct popular legislation (referenda and initiatives); election, removability at all times, and accountability of all officials.

Complete freedom of conscience, speech, press, meetings, strikes and unions… complete and general civil equality inviolability of the individual and home… complete separation of the church from the state and a declaration that religion is a private affair for every individual.

The introduction of a compulsory, general public education at government expense; equality of languages.

Abolition of permanent armies and their replacement by a people’s militia.

In the matters of economics:

A reduction of the working time in order to relieve surplus labour.

Establishment of a legal maximum of working time based on norms determined by health conditions (an eight-hour working norm for most branches of industry as soon as possible, and lower norms for work which is dangerous or harmful to health).

Establishment of a minimum wage in agreement between administration and labour unions.

Complete government insurance (for accident, unemployment, sickness, old age, and so on), administered by the insured at the expense of the state and employers.

Legislative protection of labour in all branches of industry and trade, in accordance with the health conditions supervised by factory inspection commissions elected by workers (normal working conditions, hygienic conditions of buildings; prohibition of work for youngsters below sixteen years of age, limitation of work for youngsters, prohibition of female and child labour in some branches of industry and during specified periods, adequate and uninterrupted Sunday rest, and so forth).

Professional organisation of workers and their increased participation in determining internal rules in industrial enterprises.

In matters of agricultural policy:

Socialisation of all privately owned lands; that is, their transfer from private property of individual owners to public domain and administration by democratically organised communes and territorial associations of communes on the basis of equalised utilisation.”