Transition to socialism

The ‘coup’, the concept of socialism and the class nature of the Soviet Union

The following article was first published in 1991. We are re-publishing it on the twenty-fifth anniversary of the ‘coup’ against Gorbachev.

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By |August 26th, 2016|Europe, Russian Revolution, Socialism, Transition to socialism|Comments Off on The ‘coup’, the concept of socialism and the class nature of the Soviet Union

Message Of Greetings To The Bavarian Soviet Republic

April 7th 2016 is the ninety-seventh anniversary of the creation of the Bavarian Soviet Republic (Bayerische Räterepublik or Münchner Räterepublik) in Munich. The following is Lenin’s message of greetings to the republic. Based on the experience of the revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat in Russia over 17 months, Lenin is keen to know about the progress of many crucial steps that need to be taken to strengthen the proletarian dictatorship and weaken the power of the bourgeoisie. (more…)

Transition from Capitalism to Socialism

Some notes on the Concept of Socialism
Introduction

Socialism can be described as being about justice, equality, a better life. While this is generally true, these are the final outcomes of socialism and therefore it is not an accurate description of the Marxist concept of socialism. Marx was very specific when defining his concept of socialism. We should therefore start by saying what it is not.

Socialism is sometimes described as being an ideology. This is also inaccurate. For Marx, socialism is a mode of production that comes out of the womb of capitalism. It is an objective necessity arising from the contradiction between the relations of production and the productive forces. That is, a conflict that develops in order to free the progress and growth of the productive forces and make them compatible with the relations of production. This conflict exists under capitalism just as it did under other modes of production (slavery, feudalism). The development of technology is impeded by capitalism. The productive forces have been developed under the constraints of the division of labour which prevents their use to the fullest scale. Therefore in Marx’s time, as now, the conditions are ripe for socialism.

The final stage – the aim of socialism- is communism. This is how society will develop if capitalism does not lead to generalised barbarism. Socialism will come about through the development of consciousness and other factors. There will be no state, no repression and exploitation. Economic development will be on the basis of abundance but this must develop on a world scale. Capitalism has inflicted great harm, so socialism will take a long time to develop. Socialism is phase one of the new society created through working class revolution. The lack […]