Marxist (Scientific) Socialism Belief in the inevitability of the violent upheaval of the
proletariat against the bourgeoisie to throw off the opporessive bourgeois capitalist
economic system and the oppressive government that this system creates and
necessitates. Sees all of history as being determined by economic forces and the conflict
between those who own and those who do not. Would create a society of pure equality
through the oommunal ownership of the means of production. From each according to his
abiliy; to each according to his needs. Found in at least small numbers in all countries of
Europe by the late 19th century. Strongly supported by skilled and unskilled workers and some
Revisionist Marxian Socialism
Utopian Socialism Desires the creation of a utopian soceity based upon the principle of the
comunnal ownership of property. This society would be created by peaceful change
through education or legislation or the formation of small utopian communitites. The
individual would reach his/her highest potential of satisfaction. “Utopian” communities
included Fourier’s phalansteries, Robert Owen’s towns, St. Simon’s organization of labor.
Louis Blanc’s workshops are considered part of this tradition. Found mostly in industrialized
Western and Northern Europe. Eccentric individuals from all classes.
Republicanism Focus on individual rights and liberties and security of person and property
in a government of elected officials only. NO monarchy. Universal male suffrage a major
goal. Highly anti-clerical. Found mainly in France and Italy among the middle and lower
bourgeoisie and the artisan and skilled worker classes.
Radicalism (Utilitarianism) A form of liberalism found only in Britain. It favors a broader
suffrage and greater representation than classical liberalism. There is a great emphasis on
legal/judical/penal reform. “That goernment governs best, that governs least” Anti-clerical,
Found only in Great Britain and supported by middle to lower bourgeoisie and the artisan
and skilled worker classes.
Liberalism a political philosophy that focuses on the rights of individuals—especially rights
to security of person and property, but also the civil rights of free speech, press, religion,
assembly, etc. Believes in constitutional principles and representative institutions in govt.
Desires constitutional monarchy with strong limits on monarchical power. Govt. is to be
extremely limited in its interference in the lives of its citizens—its only generally accepted
functions are order and security (justice, army, police). Believes very strongly in free trade,
the sanctity of private property and no govt. regulation of business. Electorate and those
standing for election are limited to persons of substantial property (land or business). Tends
to be anti-clerical or favor strong Church/state separation. Found all over Europe, most
highly developed in GB. Favored by the upper and middle bourgeoisie.
Conservatism Belief in making change only through very slow evolution and reform of
existing structures (organic change). Adapt traditional structures to new conditions. Support kings, hierarchies and frequently the Catholic Church. Strong belief in hierarchies and natural leadership roles of certain groups. Great emphasis placed on the corporate nature and needs
of the State. Order is important. Belief in little or no popular participation in government. Found all over Europe. Supported by monarchs, aristocrats, the Church (any established) and peasants. In GB conservative philosophies are found throughout the classes and have more recognition
of individual rights and liberties.
Reaction A desire to “set the clock back” and return to the “good old days.” Order, hierarchy
and control of voiceless masses are primary goals. Strong belief in natural hierarchies based
on birth. Strong support of hierarchical churches and use of the churches to maintain control.
Autocracy or absolutism favored. Found largely in Central, Eastern and Southern Europe.
Supported by monarchs, aristocrats and some peasants.