Socialism Evidence

Origins and Development

Charles Fourier and Robert Owen subscribed to Utopianism in founding experimental communities.

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels proclaimed that the revolutionary overthrow of capitalism was inevitable.

Lenin and the Bolsheviks adopted communism creating the Bolshevik Model which was prominent in China, North Korea, Vietnam and Cambodia.

Castro Regime developed close links with the Soviet Union.

Salvador Allende became the world's first democratically elected Marxist head of state. 

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Community and Cooperation


Charles Fourier encouraged the founding of modern communities each containing about 1,800 members, which he called phalansteries.

In Israel, communitarian experiment Kibbutz consisted of a system of cooperative settlements that are collectively owned and run by their members. 


Rochdale Pioneers set up a grocery shop, took advantage of economies of scale and sold them cheaply to working class members.

The majority of tax measures have been earmarked for higher NHS and social spending.

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Equality, Class Politics, Common Ownership


Introduce a mansion tax on £2 million homes and abolish the marriage tax allowance.

School leavers who achieve the right grades will be guaranteed an apprenticeship.

Class Politics:

Class no longer matters as the distinction between the working and middle classes have blurred, and that individualism is they key attribute of modern, post-industrial societies.

Common Ownership:

When Lenin and the Bolsheviks seized power in Russia in 1917, they believed that socialism could be built through nationalisation. This was not completed until the 1930s when Stalin's 'second revolution' witnessed the construction of a centrally planned economy, a system of state collectivisation.

Atlee's government nationalised the commanding heights of the economy.

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Revolutionary Socialism

First successful revolution in 1917 led by Lenin and the Bolsheviks, they seized power in Russia in a coup d'état than a popular insurrection.

Chinese revolution of 1949, led by Mao, was the culmination of a long military campaign against both Japan and Chinese Nationalists.

The Argentinian revolution in 1967 led guerilla forces in various parts of Latin America and commanded troops during the Cuban revolution of 1959, which brought Fidel Castro to power.

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Evolutionary Socialism

Fabian Society took up the cause of parliamentary socialism in the UK. The Fabians believed that socialism would develop naturally and peacefully out of liberal capitalism. 

SPD in Germany became the largest socialist party in Europe.

Eduard Bernstein novel Evolutionary Socialism developed the Fabian belief in Gradualism.

Working class could use ballot box to introduce socialism.

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Social Democracy

Revisionist Socialism:

1945 Atlee government nationalised the major utlities.

Labour Party's Clause IV outlined support for the common ownership of the means of production, distribution and exchange.

Neorevisionism and the third way:

Blair Project attempted to fuse communitarian ideas with liberal ones.

Politicians endorse enterprise and fairness, opportunity and security, self reliance and interdependence.

Inevitability of Gradualism:

Lenin proclaimed that without leadership of a revolutionary party, the working class would only be able to gain trade union consciousness, a desire for material improvement within the capitalist system, but not full revolutionary class consciousness. 

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