The Socialism portal
is a political
, and economic philosophy
encompassing a range of economic
and social systems
characterised by social ownership
of the means of production
. It includes the political theories and movements associated with such systems. Social ownership can be public
, or of equity
. While no single definition encapsulates the many types of socialism
, social ownership is the one common element. The types of socialism vary based on the role of markets
in resource allocation, on the structure of management in organizations, and socialists disagree on whether government, particularly existing government, is the correct vehicle for change.
Socialist systems are divided into non-market and market forms. Non-market socialism substitutes factor markets and money with integrated economic planning and engineering or technical criteria based on calculation performed in-kind, thereby producing a different economic mechanism that functions according to different economic laws and dynamics than those of capitalism. A non-market socialist system eliminates the inefficiencies and crises traditionally associated with capital accumulation and the profit system in capitalism. The socialist calculation debate, originated by the economic calculation problem, concerns the feasibility and methods of resource allocation for a planned socialist system. By contrast, market socialism retains the use of monetary prices, factor markets and in some cases the profit motive, with respect to the operation of socially owned enterprises and the allocation of capital goods between them. Profits generated by these firms would be controlled directly by the workforce of each firm or accrue to society at large in the form of a social dividend. Anarchism and libertarian socialism oppose the use of the state as a means to establish socialism, favouring decentralisation above all, whether to establish non-market socialism or market socialism.
Socialist politics has been both internationalist and nationalist in orientation; organised through political parties and opposed to party politics; at times overlapping with trade unions and at other times independent and critical of them; and present in both industrialised and developing nations. Social democracy originated within the socialist movement, supporting economic and social interventions to promote social justice. While nominally retaining socialism as a long-term goal, since the post-war period it has come to embrace a Keynesian mixed economy within a predominantly developed capitalist market economy and liberal democratic polity that expands state intervention to include income redistribution, regulation and a welfare state. Economic democracy proposes a sort of market socialism, with more democratic control of companies, currencies, investments and natural resources.
The socialist political movement includes a set of political philosophies that originated in the revolutionary movements of the mid-to-late 18th century and out of concern for the social problems that were associated with capitalism. By the late 19th century, after the work of Karl Marx and his collaborator Friedrich Engels, socialism had come to signify opposition to capitalism and advocacy for a post-capitalist system based on some form of social ownership of the means of production. By the 1920s, communism and social democracy had become the two dominant political tendencies within the international socialist movement, with socialism itself becoming the most influential secular movement of the 20th century. Socialist parties and ideas remain a political force with varying degrees of power and influence on all continents, heading national governments in many countries around the world. Today, many socialists have also adopted the causes of other social movements such as environmentalism, feminism and progressivism.
While the emergence of the Soviet Union as the world's first nominally socialist state led to socialism's widespread association with the Soviet economic model, some economists and intellectuals argued that in practice the model functioned as a form of state capitalism or a non-planned administrative or command economy. Academics, political commentators and other scholars sometimes refer to Western Bloc countries which have been democratically governed by socialist parties such as Britain, France, Sweden and Western social-democracies in general as democratic socialist. (Full article...)
Socialism with Chinese characteristics, meaning socialism adapted to Chinese conditions, is the official ideology of the Communist Party of China (CPC), claimed to be based upon scientific socialism. This ideology supports the creation of a socialist market economy dominated by the public sector since China is, as claimed by the CPC, in the primary stage of socialism. The People's Republic of China (PRC) government maintains that it has not abandoned Marxism but has developed many of the terms and concepts of Marxist theory to accommodate its new economic system. The CPC argues that socialism is compatible with these economic policies. In current Chinese Communist thinking, China is in the primary stage of socialism—a view which explains the PRC government's flexible economic policies to develop into an industrialized nation.
(14 May 1771 – 17 November 1858) was a Welsh
social reformer and one of the founders of utopian socialism
and the cooperative movement
Owen's philosophy was based on three intellectual pillars:
- First, no one was responsible for his [or her] will and his [or her] own actions because his whole character is formed independently of himself; people are products of their heredity and environment, hence his support for education and labour reform, rendering him a pioneer in human capital investment.
- Second, all religions are based on the same ridiculous imagination, that make man a weak, imbecile animal; a furious bigot and fanatic; or a miserable hypocrite
- Third, support for the putting-out system instead of the factory system
||I know that many of my Anglo-Saxon friends have sometimes been shocked by the semi-Fascist view they would occasionally hear expressed by German refugees, whose genuinely socialist convictions could not be doubted. But while these observers put this down to the others' being Germans, the true explanation is that they were socialists whose experience had carried them several stages beyond that yet reached by socialists in England and America. It is true, of course, that German socialists have found much support in their country from certain features of the Prussian tradition; and this kinship which in Germany both sides gloried, gives additional support to our main contention. But it would be a mistake to believe that the specific German rather than the socialist element produced totalitarianism. It was the prevalence of socialist views and not Prussianism that Germany had in common with Italy and Russia-and it was from the masses and not from the classes stepped in the Prussian tradition, and favored by it, that National Socialism arose.
|— Friedrich Hayek, The Road to Serfdom, 1944
The following are images from various socialism-related articles on Wikipedia.
Mikhail Bakunin opposed the Marxist aim of dictatorship of the proletariat in favour of universal rebellion and allied himself with the federalists in the First International before his expulsion by the Marxists (from History of socialism)
Paris Commune was a major early implementation of socialist ideas (from Socialism)
The celebration of the election of the Commune on 28 March 1871—the
Turkey. (from Socialism)
Arabic letters "Lam" and "Alif" reading "Lā" (Arabic for "No!") are a symbol of Islamic Socialism in
History of socialism)
Barricades Boulevard Voltaire, Paris during the uprising known as the Paris Commune (from
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