The Russian Revolution

"Adventure it was, and one of the most marvelous mankind ever embarked upon, sweeping into history at the head of the toiling masses, and staking everything on their vast and simple desires." John Reed

Try to narrow your research to a particular area. You might start by finding an entry in a good print encyclopedia or by reading a short, general book on the Russian Revolution. This will give you an overview of the subject and help you to refine your search. 

Check out the starting your research project page before you start!  

Some possible subject areas for this topic include:
the role of labor or the peasantry in the Russian Revolution
the influence of Marxism
the anarchist movement
Trotsky versus Lenin
depictions of the Russian Revolution in art

We can't fit every resource about the Russian Revolution on to this list! A topic guide is just the beginning of building your bibliography.

Reference materials

This is the place to start any research project. Reference books offer short, authoritative information on every topic. These books must be used in the library. Most contain bibliographies of important books on your topic. A good first stop would be any of the standard print encyclopedias in the Beaver collection: Encyclopedia Americana, World Book or Britannica.


Bingham, Jame, ed. (2001). The Usborne Internet-linked encyclopedia of world history. REF 901 B51 2001
DeFronzo, James. (2006). Revolutionary movements in world history. REF 303.64 REV A 3 volume set. Look under "Russian Revolution" in Volume 3.
Herb, G. and Kaplan, D. ( 2008). Nations and nationalism: a global historical overview. REF 320.54 NAT 4 volume set with olive-green spines. Volume 3, pages 689-701 for overview and current bibliography.
Rappaport, Helen. (1999). Joseph Stalin: A biographical companion. REF 947.084 R18 1999 A subject encyclopedia, this resource contains short entries on individuals, concepts, movements and groups with a relationship to Stalin.


Britannica Online Great for pre-search and primary sources, including speeches, essays, biographies, court decisions, editorials and photos.
Gale Virtual Reference Library
General Reference Center Gold


Books about Russia and its history will be found at 947. Biographies can be found at 921, listed alphabetically by the subject's last name (for example, a biography of Joseph Stalin would carry the call number: 921 Stalin).
Gottfried, Ted. (2002). The road to Communism. 947.07 G71 2002 144 pages.
Rabinowitch, Alexander. (1976). The Bolsheviks come to power : the revolution of 1917 in Petrograd. 947.45 R11 1976 393 pages.
Reed, John. (1935). Ten days that shook the world. 947.084 R25 371 pages.
Streissguth, Thomas. (2002). The rise of the Soviet Union. 947.08 R49 2002 256 pages.
Wade, Rex A. (2001). The Bolshevik revolution and Russian Civil War. 947.084 W11 2001 220 pages.


For these Gale Group Resources, try the following subject terms: Russian Revolution, 1917-1921; Trotsky, Leon; Soviet History, 1917-1945. You can modify the subject terms to fit your particular interest.
Academic OneFile
Expanded Academic ASAP
General OneFile
Student Edition
Biography Resource Center For information on famous people associated with the Russian Revolution. Search by the person's last name.
SIRS Copy this subject heading: Soviet Union, History, Revolution (1917-1921) Paste it into the search field. You can modify the subject terms to fit your particular interest.
Facts on File For pre-search, biographies, primary sources and images.

Internet resources

Internet Modern History Sourcebook
Alexander Palace museum
Seventeen moments in Soviet history

BPL resources

Credo Reference
PAIS International

Reed, John. (1935) Ten days that shook the world. NY: Modern Library.

Updated, 9-09