The Past And Future Of Communism

1387 words - 6 pages

Communism is an ideal society that is unrealistic for humans to maintain. In this system major resources and means of production are owned by the community rather than by individuals. The society is without money, without a state, without property and without social classes. All people would contribute to the society according to their ability and take from the society according to their needs. Fredrick Engel's believed that a proletarian could only be liberated by abolishing competition, private property, and all class differences, and replacing it with association.

The concept was derived from ancient sources, such as Plato's Republic and the earliest Christian communes. In the early 19th century, the idea of a communist society was a response to the poor social classes that developed during the beginning of modern capitalism. Communal societies have existed for centuries, yet they eventually failed. Throughout history, religious groups have had the most success in maintaining communes. The Roman Catholic Church established monasteries all over Europe in the middle Ages. Most of these small-scale private experiments involved voluntary cooperation, with everyone participating in the governing process.

Philosophers Karl Marx and Fredric Engel influenced the movement of communism greatly. In the late 1800's the two discovered that they had individually come to ideal opinions on the perfect society. They collaborated their ideas in their most famous "Communist Manifesto", as well as many other informative pamphlets. Third World countries striving for national independence and social change experimented with their philosophies on economics.

Fredrick Engel wrote, "The general co-operation of all members of society for the purpose of planned exploitation of the forces of production, the expansion of production to the point where it will satisfy the needs of all, the abolition of a situation in which the needs of some are satisfied at the expense of the needs of others, the complete liquidation of classes and their conflicts, the rounded development of the capacities of all members of society through the elimination of the present division of labor, through industrial education, through engaging in varying activities, through the participation by all in the enjoyments produced by all, through the combination of city and country -- these are the main consequences of the abolition of private property."

The philosopher's ideals were kindled by the mistreatment of the working class throughout history. Every social system of the past, Marx argued, had been a device by which the rich and powerful few could live by the toil and misery of the powerless many, therefore causing class differences and conflict. Engel and Marx believed that the capitalist system was flawed and was bound to destroy itself. They tried to show that the more productive the system became, the more difficult it would be to make it function: The more goods it...

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