Portal:Communism

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Communism is a political ideology that seeks to establish a future without social class or formalized state structure, and with social organization based upon common ownership of the means of production. It can be classified as a branch of the broader socialist movement. Communism also refers to a variety of political movements which claim the establishment of such a social organization as their ultimate goal.

Early forms of human social organization have been described as "primitive communism". However, communism as a political goal generally is a conjectured form of future social organization which has never been implemented. There is a considerable variety of views among self-identified communists, including Maoism, Trotskyism, council communism, Luxemburgism, and various currents of left communism, which are in addition to more widespread varieties. However, various offshoots of the Soviet and Maoist forms of Marxism–Leninism comprise a particular branch of communism that had been the primary driving force for communism in world politics during most of the 20th century. Template:/box-footer

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A communist revolution is a proletarian revolution inspired by the ideas of Marxism that aims to replace capitalism with communism, typically with socialism as an intermediate stage. The idea that a proletarian revolution is needed is a cornerstone of Marxism; Marxists believe that the workers of the world must unite and free themselves from capitalist oppression to create a world run by and for the working class. Thus, in the Marxist view, proletarian revolutions need to happen in countries all over the world; see world revolution.

Leninism argues that a communist revolution must be led by a vanguard of 'professional revolutionaries'—that is men and women who are fully dedicated to the communist cause and who can then form the nucleus of the revolutionary movement. Some Marxists disagree with the idea of a vanguard as put forth by Lenin, especially left communists but also including some who continue to consider themselves Marxists-Leninists despite such a disagreement. These critics insist that the entire working class - or at least a large part of it - must be deeply involved and equally committed to the socialist or communist cause in order for a proletarian revolution to be successful. To this end, they seek to build massive communist parties with very large memberships.

Selected biography

Friedrich Engels
Friedrich Engels ( 28 November 1820 – 5 August 1895) was a German industrialist, social scientist, author, political theorist, philosopher, and father of Marxist theory, alongside Karl Marx. In 1845 he published The Condition of the Working Class in England, based on personal observations and research. In 1848 he produced with Marx The Communist Manifesto (which was based on Engels' The Principles of Communism,) and later he supported Marx financially to do research and write Das Kapital. After Marx's death Engels edited the second and third volumes. Additionally, Engels organized Marx's notes on the "Theories of Surplus Value" and this was later published as the "fourth volume" of Capital.

Selected quote

"The Communists disdain to conceal their views and aims. They openly declare that their ends can be attained only by the forcible overthrow of all existing social conditions. Let the ruling classes tremble at a Communistic revolution. The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win."

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, Manifesto of the Communist Party, English edition of 1888

Selected picture

Flag-hoisting ceremony at the 19th congress of the Communist Party of India.

Photo credit: Soman

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General

Variations of Communism

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Present and former Socialist states (under the direction of Communist parties)

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Structure

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