Chapter 23 Essay
The years between 1815-1848 saw the rise of a number of related and competing ideologies, one of them being Socialism. Socialism sought economic equality for all, and was very much against the the Laissez Faire ideal of liberalism. There were different forms of socialism as it evolved over the years. Throughout the 19th century, Europe saw an uprising and evolution of socialism led by key names Karl Marx, Henri de Saint-Simon, Charles Fourier, and Robert Owen. It created equality for the majority of workers and prompted ideas of revolution. Socialism was partly rooted in the French Revolution, with a number of radical Jacobins taking the idea of political equality for all and moving it to the next step: economic equality for all through the common ownership of all property. The earliest socialist writers were coined “Utopian Socialists” by Karl Marx. Marx believed the earliest socialists offered non-scientific, unrealistic solutions to the problems of modern society. One of the influential early socialist thinkers was Count Henri de Saint-Simon. He argued the key to progress was proper organization. He also thought in highly moralistic terms. He said that every social institution must make improving conditions for the poor their main goal. In around 1830, another socialist thinker emerged: Charles Fourier. He took another approach. He was a fierce defender of freedom of choice. He established utopian communities, each with 1,620 people, where free love and voluntary unions were the norm. Many women were enthusiastic followers of Fourier because he was an early proponent of the total emancipation of women. The socialist Louis Blanc fought for a whole different right. He wanted the right to work. He believed the government should provide jobs when the private sector could not. These early Socialists birthed the ideology, but they had relatively little impact in comparison with Marx’s proletarian socialism. In 1848, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels...
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