The White Revolution (Persian: انقلاب سفید Enghelāb-e Sefid) was a far-reaching series of reforms in Iranlaunched in 1963 by Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Mohammad Reza Shah’s reform program was built especially to strengthen those classes that supported the traditional system. The Shah advertised the White Revolution as a step towards westernization, but there is little doubt that he also had political motives; the White Revolution (a name attributed to the fact it was bloodless) was a way for him to legitimize the Pahlavi dynasty. Part of the reason for launching the White Revolution was that the Shah hoped to get rid of the landlords' influence and create a new base of support among the peasants and working class. The bulk of the program was aimed at Iran’s peasantry, a class the Shah hoped to gain as an ally to thwart the threat of the increasingly hostile middle class.Thus the White Revolution in Iran represented a new attempt to introduce reform from above and preserve traditional power patterns. Through land reform, the essence of the White Revolution, the Shah hoped to ally himself with the peasantry in the countryside, and hoped to sever their ties with the aristocracy in the city.
In order to legitimize the White Revolution, the Shah called for a national referendum in early 1963 in which 5,598,711 people voted for the reforms, and 4,115 voted against the reforms.