Posted: June 12th, 2022
Socialism and communism are pretty similar to one another when it comes to their definition. “Generally, socialism refers to an economic system or political organization in which the means of production and distribution are owned or controlled collectively, often by a centralized government” (Azria, 2013, para. 1). Socialism was brought about in hopes that it would help erase class conflicts and social problems that were caused by a capitalist system. The main way to explain socialism is a government or source of power will collect ownership of many things such as food, clothing, and other goods and distribute them how and to whom they see fit. Communism is very similar to socialism because they both use a central power or government to distribute goods. “Communism is a political and economic system that seeks to eliminate private property and spread the benefits of labor equally throughout the populace” (Issitt, 2013, para. 1). In many cases communism is looked at to be an extension to socialism, both of these have theories written about them by a famous theorist named Karl Max. He believed that the working class would lead a type of revolution or rebellion before governments were able to gain ownership over wealth and property in hopes to eliminate a capitalist class-based system. Both are these are similar because they have the same strategy and goal. In communism the working class own everything, all members of the community work toward the same goal. In this form of government there are no wealthy and no poor people; this is because all members are considered equal. Members of the community work the same bare minimal because nothing is gained by working harder. In this type of society there is low production, mass poverty, and limited advancement. The community distributes what is produced and it is based on who they feel needs what goods and services. Socialism is pretty much the same except their main focus is on equality. Unlike communism workers in a socialism government will earn money that they spend as they feel is best, however unlike communism the government owns and operates production. Just like communism there is nothing achieved by working harder than others which results in poor motivation. In many cases socialism and communism arose because many people were wanting to overthrow the aristocracy which the bourgeoisie did, but when they did it ended up getting them capitalism instead. “Eventually, under the French Revolution, the bourgeoisie overthrew the aristocracy and created industrial capitalism” (Shubert, Goldstein, 2012, sect. 1.5). The main thing that promoted the rise of communism and socialism was the working class was tired of suffering while the wealthy did nothing to help them. Therefore, they wanted equality and for everyone to have the same wealth. When it came to strikes, they had a huge impact on European societies. This is because the main goal from strikes was to raise wages, address working conditions, while also challenging to change the political and economic situations within the European nation. In many cases Europeans likes socialism and communism mainly because it helped make everyone equal. It also helped bring societies together after they were torn apart by the French Revolution. At this point most Europeans were willing to try any type of political system if it meant getting away from capitalism. I personally feel that socialism and communism played a major role when it comes to WWI. I feel this way because of certain events such as Russia signing treaties with Germany helped lead to the war.
Azria, S. M. C. J. (2013). Economic Systems: Socialism. Research Starters: Sociology (Online Edition). Retrieved from
Shubert, A. & Goldstein, R.J. (2012). Twentieth-century Europe[Electronic version]. Retrieved from
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