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World Leaders and Their Decisions, Research Paper Example

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Research Paper

Lenin is one of the most influential revolutionary political figures of the 20th Century. Apart from being one of the most radical thinkers, he was the person who laid new principles for society in Russia. [1]Therefore, the following essay is going to reveal the leadership qualities and personality traits of Lenin.

A leader, according to Blondel[2] is determined by behavior and position. There is a difference, though, between those holding the power and the people with real leadership skills. A leader is able to influence people, make them agree with them and follow their way of thinking. Blondel[3], leadership is a behavioral concept, and therefore, is not determined by the level of power. It is also said that not all instances of exercising power are an example of leadership.

As per Masciulli et al. [4] different elements of leadership need to be taken into consideration when defining a leader. These are personality traits, ethical and cultural background and character, organizational context, tasks and collective problems, nature of the imperative judgment, the way of gaining support and the effects and results of the leadership.

Civilization in leadership usually involves an innovative way of thinking; it involves the political, instrumental, philosophical and technological, scientific and labor side of a society. When looking at civilizations, it is evident that most of them have a leadership structure and an advanced society with different groups of people and leaders. Leaders, therefore, only can exist in civilizations. [5]

Progress is the result of leaders in civilizations. Engel [6] to make the society and civilization fairer and more functional for all. Leaders make things change with the intention to change it to the better. The direction of change is determined by the personality trait and belief of the leader.  The following essay would look at the civilization in the early 20th Century Russia and reveal how the ideology developed by Lenin changed the course of political progress. Using Engel’s definition, the authors would reveal whether there was a real progress made by the new system of civilization introduced by Lenin.

Lenin: personality traits

Lozovsky [7] confirms that as Lenin was from a well-educated family in Russia and studied law, he was also a mastermind to find solutions for the masses to escape exploitation. He was first introduced to radical ideas at the university, and it is important to mention an event that formed his ideology and personality in a great way; the execution of his brother. He was expelled because of his membership of radical groups, and still gained a degree as an external student. [8] The Siberian exile after his arrest also fuelled his passion to change the course of the civilization in Russia. Instead of hiding, he fought back, and this is one of the characteristics of great leaders. However, he was patient enough to wait for the right moment, when the masses were exhausted of the war and civil war was inevitable to lead the October revolution in 1917.

It is fair to say that Lenin was a ruthless leader, still pragmatic. He had detailed plans to recover Russia’s economy and build a new, fairer civilization on the ruins of the tsar’s regime. His ideologies were practical and well-developed. He believed in a fair and equal society and despised exploitation.

Ethical and cultural background

Lenin was a well-educated leader, who was open to new ideas. He was also a thinker and never stopped learning. He often had discussions with other leaders and joined groups, traveled to Western Europe to find a model to implement in Russia. He was in every way international, and used ideas from all around the world to benefit his homeland. [9] He studied law and found that justice had a superiority over others. When looking at the political system of the early 20th Century Russia, contrasting the lives of the tsar and masses, he found that the aristocracy had unjustified benefits. He also found that oppressing the revolutionary groups and ideas hard, there was no way the country could make a progress towards modernization. The country needed thinkers, not only aristocrats, and while some people were exploited for work and money, they were not able to work on the country’s benefit. When joining the revolutionary groups and read about a fairer society, he believed that the good of the masses has a higher priority than the benefit of the few. He did not agree with the execution and exile of many leaders based on their ideology and became determined to change the course of politics and Russian civilization.

Collective problems

At the time of Lenin’s first appearance in politics, there were some collective problems the society shared. Workers and peasants were either not paid or under-paid. Lenin united workers into a political group, and let them express their ideas they were not allowed to say out loud before. His famous “April Theses”[10] were the answers to masses’ questions. There were many ideological and economic problems arising during and after the First World War in Russia. Lenin realized that the system was in the way of progress.

Imperative judgment

Lenin believed that knowledge, training and education liberated people in Russia. As the right to education was declined from the vast majority of people, Lenin expressed several times in his writings that if the country wanted to make economical and sociological progress, there was a need for creating equality. His main ideas; freedom, equality and unity were imperative for his ideology.

Gaining support

As radical groups already existed in Russia in 1917, Lenin had to gain support from the groups to become a leader. He worked hard on the group’s propaganda and became the founder of the Communist Party of Russia, leading the revolution. The October Revolution of Russia made him become a real leader, as he could deliver the promises he earlier made to people. [11]

Results (progress) and Conclusion

Although Lenin achieved progress towards a more democratic and equal society, he has also contributed towards the suffering of masses. Lozovsky [12] confirms that: “He was unalterably opposed to the Russian masses shedding their blood for the greatness of Russia. Why? Because to him “Russia” was not an abstraction, but a real living thing.” For him, the country’s progress had a higher priority than people’s well-being, and this is why his ideology became disconnected from people.

Bibliography:

Lozovsky, A. (2006) Lenin: The Great Strategist of the Class War. Labor Herald Library by the Trade Union Educational League

Steele, H. Lenin: Revolutionary and leader. His impact on Russia and the 20th Century. Online.         < http://www.guernicus.com/academics/pdf/lenin.pdf>

BBC History. Online. < http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/historic_figures/lenin_vladimir.shtml>

Engel, J.(2010) Change is hard. . . but even small steps matter. In: Rethinking leadership and the       whole of the government” Strategic Studies Institute.

Blondel, J. (1987) Political Leadership. Towards a general Analysis. Sage Publications.

Masciulli, J., Molchanov, M., Knight, A. (2000) Political Leadership in Context. The Ashgate Research Companion to Political Leadership. Online. <http://www.ashgate.com/pdf/SamplePages/Ashgate_Research_Companion_to_Political_Leadership_Intro.pdf>

[1] BBC History. Online. < http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/historic_figures/lenin_vladimir.shtml>

[2] Blondel, J. (1987) Political Leadership. Towards a general Analysis. Sage Publications.

[3] Ibid. p.15.

[4] Masciulli, J., Molchanov, M., Knight, A. (2000) Political Leadership in Context. The Ashgate Research Companion to Political Leadership. Online. <http://www.ashgate.com/pdf/SamplePages/Ashgate_Research_Companion_to_Political_Leadership_Intro.pdf>

[5] Wikipedia, Online. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civilization>

[6] Engel, J.(2010) Change is hard. . . but even small steps matter. In: Rethinking leadership and the whole of the government” Strategic StudIbids Institute.

[7] Lozovsky, A. (2006) Lenin: The Great Strategist of the Class War. e Labor Herald Library by the Trade Union Educational League

[8] BBC History. Online. < http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/historic_figures/lenin_vladimir.shtml>

[9] Lozovsky, A. (2006) Lenin: The Great Strategist of the Class War. e Labor Herald Library by the Trade Union Educational League

[10] Steele, H. Lenin: Revolutionary and leader. His impact on Russia and the 20th Century. Online. < http://www.guernicus.com/academics/pdf/lenin.pdf>

[11] Lozovsky, A. (2006) Lenin: The Great Strategist of the Class War. e Labor Herald Library by the Trade Union Educational League

[12] Ibid

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