Early Belorussian Nationalism
It was those memories that Kastus' Kalinowski (1838-64)
to evoke in his clandestine newspaper Muzhytskaya
(Peasants' Truth), which he published to inspire an
solidarity with the Polish-Lithuanian insurrection against
in January 1863. The insurrection failed, and the Polish
territories and people were absorbed directly into the
Empire. Kalinowski, today considered the founding father
Belorussian nationalism, was hanged in Vilnius.
Despite the industrial development that took place in
Belorussia during the 1880s and 1890s, unemployment and
were widespread, giving impetus to large-scale migrations.
fifty years leading up to the Bolshevik Revolution, almost
million persons emigrated from Belorussia to the United
and to Siberia.
Following the defeat of Russia in the Russo-Japanese
the Revolution of 1905, strikes and peasant disorders
throughout the Russian Empire; to stem the unrest the tsar
granted, and then extended, civil liberties. Russian
were forced to relax their repressive policies on
ethnic groups, prompting a national and cultural flowering
Belorussia. The ban on the Belorussian language (and other
nonRussian languages) was lifted, although there were still
restrictions on its use; education was expanded, and
began to attend school for the first time; Belorussian
published classics of modern Belorussian literature; and
weekly newspaper Nasha Niva (Our Cornfield),
the Belorussian Socialist Party, lent the name
to this period (1906-18) of Belorussian history.
Data as of June 1995