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Reflections On Socialism

What’s striking about the division of the world politically is the propensity of countries to accept or reject socialism, for example. There is a head-on opposition between capitalism and socialism. The former, one might say, is natural and existed long before the word capitalism was coined. Indeed, in Antiquity and even long before, in the Paleolithic for example, people bartered and exchanged goods with an eye to profit. Socialism existed, so to speak, but it was confined to the family and the tribe at most. That’s why it’s so surprising to see socialism being extended to the whole of society, when the feeling of empathy and mutual aid is often confined to the aforementioned limits.

Free Countries Had A Democratization Of Warfare

The basis of freedom is the ability to take up arms

When we look at countries susceptible to communism and other variants of it, we realize that they share a history in which serfdom, forced labor or slavery represented an entire part of their society. Russia and France, for example, are two nations that have seen a large proportion of their populations occupy an inferior position, that of serf. In Russia, serfdom was still practiced in the mid-19th century. A few years before its abolition (in 1861), Russia had 23 million serfs out of a population of 62 million, representing around 37% of the population. In the United States, a country by nature hostile to socialist ideas, slaves have always represented less than 15% of the total population. This may explain their propensity for free trade and a sense of freedom shared by a larger part of society. France greatly inspired Marx: at the time of the Revolution and especially during the Commune, it was a country (or city, in the latter case) that was something of a communist experiment before its time. Medieval France, unlike England, seemed to be tougher on its working classes. The condition of peasants in France was generally inferior to that of their English counterparts. They were subject to heavy taxes, and most of them had only the status of serfs. The case of England is interesting. A series of peasant revolts in the late Middle Ages called into question the very existence of serfdom. It’s worth noting that English peasants were able to use weapons, notably the bow, and took part in military expeditions during the 100 Years’ War. This is in stark contrast to France, where only the nobility had a monopoly on carrying weapons. We can thus conjecture that the feeling of freedom stems from an ability to impose oneself by force.

The Case Of Scandinavia

Today, Scandinavian countries are praised for their early and more general egalitarianism within society. Where does this ability to grant rights to an entire population come from? There are several reasons for this difference from the rest of Europe. First of all, their late conversion to Christianity undoubtedly maintained for longer societies where women had a higher status than they did in Christian societies. Scandinavian paganism gave women a more prominent place, no doubt due to the fact that there was a whole pantheon of goddesses, and so a feminine principle was recognized as a force within society, whereas Abrahamic societies gave women a more than secondary role, even though Mary was celebrated there. Secondly, feudalism had not penetrated Scandinavian societies. Classes existed, slaves were present, but the structure was not as rigid as in Western Europe, no doubt due to the fact that the cultivation of cereals imposed a stronger stratification within medieval societies, which were directly descended from the Roman model (an estate – villa in Latin – with slaves was replaced by fortified estates with serfs following the disappearance of the Pax Romana provoked by the barbarian invasions).

Socialism Is An Aspiration Of The Subjugated Classes

When you’re oppressed, what you ask for is equality. When you’re not oppressed, you just want more freedom. This is a simple way of summing up why some countries have taken socialist trajectories, while others have moved towards economies characterized by free trade and entrepreneurial freedom.

Communism In The 20Th Century Probably Played The Same Role As Islam In The Middle Ages

In the Middle Ages, Islam mainly spread by the sword, whether in the Maghreb or in the Indus Valley. It was primarily the victories of Muslim generals that ensured the conversion of subjugated populations. Beyond the warlike dimension and the atrocities that were committed, how do you explain the fact that, in some cases, people embraced Islam so quickly? One argument is that Islam has had the effect of giving more rights to people occupying the lowest classes in a society. India is a good example of this. Many members of the lower classes were undoubtedly seduced by the egalitarianism proposed by Islam in the face of a pre-existing society structured around a rigid and hermetically sealed caste system. It’s a phenomenon comparable to communism, with the difference of course that it offered a relationship with transcendence and strict rites to follow, whereas communism fiercely fought the spiritual to replace it with a systematic cult of personality focused on its leaders.

Why Are South American Countries More Inclined Towards Socialism?

South America is a land that is generally quite sensitive to socialist ideas. Capitalist bastions do exist (e.g. Chile, until recently), but these would not have been possible without the active support of the United States. How can we explain the permeability of socialism when its North American neighbors are totally opposed to it? Here again, we need to look at history and the hierarchical structure of society. The South American continent was a kind of serf to Europe (mainly Portugal and Spain) for almost five centuries. Certainly, there was an opulent and cultured elite. True, there was a form of integration with the metropolis, as in the case of the Spanish territories, where there was no distinction on paper between its European and American subjects (unlike 19th-century European colonialism vis-à-vis Africa and Asia). In reality, however, the people who lived there suffered under the weight of a class-based society in which only a small proportion of the population was Spanish and escaped hard labor. It was undoubtedly this demographic and social structure, the consequences of which are still visible today, that made socialist ideas attractive to many inhabitants of the sub-continent.

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