A hub of online professional and topical glossaries/dictionaries
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AGITATION  look up translate image
"an activity in the form of dissemination of ideas and information and of putting forward of slogans and appeals during talks, at meetings, on the radio, TV, in films and through the press (newspapers), magazines, books, posters, cartoons, and so on), aimed at influencing the minds and feelings of the people. Agitation is one of the forms of political, ideological struggle between social classes and parties."
ALIENATION  look up translate image
Forced separation. In economics, the historical process of distancing the worker from his/her product.
ANARCHO-SYNDICALISM  look up translate image
The belief that trade unions can accomplish revolution without the guidance of a revolutionary political party. It's often associated with the Industrial Workers of the World, but not necessarily with their agreement
ANARCHY  look up translate image
The dictionary says, "complete absence of government and law." "Political disorder and violence" "disorder in an sphere of activity." In revolutionary politics, they differ from communists in that they believe it is possible to effect an immediate transformation to a perfect society. In Marx's day, it was a strong, competing ideology. Today's anarchists tend to be middle class radicals with strong ideas about what they oppose, a few ideas about what they want, and almost no thoughts about how to get there.
ANTAGONISM  look up translate image
is "an irreconcilable contradiction In a society based on exploitation antagonism manifests itself in struggle between exploiters and the exploited, oppressors and the oppressed. This contradiction can be resolved only in a revolutionary way, through social revolution."
ANTI-SOVIETISM  look up translate image
is "hostile activity against the Soviet Union which consists in misrepresenting the Soviet way of life and the Soviet state's domestic and foreign policy. Anti-Sovietism is the central component of anti-communism."
ARMCHAIR SOCIALIST  look up translate image
Someone who spouts a lot of radical rhetoric, but doesn't do anything. See praxis
BARBARISM  look up translate image
Also called serfdom or feudalism. A stage of social development above slavery, where most production came from serfs who were obliged to work on large estates under an aristocratic family.
BLANQUISM  look up translate image
A trend in the early socialist movement in France, led by Louis Auguste Blanqui (1805-1881). Lenin wrote that Blanqui did not believe socialism would result from the working class, but from a small conspiracy of intellectuals. See also anarchy.
BOLSHEVIK  look up translate image
Russian for "majority." Usually used to refer to the majority in the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party who agreed with Lenin that capitalism needed to be overthrown. See Menshevik
BOURGEOIS REVOLUTION  look up translate image
is "a socialrevolution whose principal task is to destroy the feudal system (or its vestiges) and to establish the economic and political domination of the bourgeoisie. In dependent and colonial countries the bourgeois revolution is aimed also at winning national independence."
"abourgeois revolution [is] distinguished by the participation in it of the broad masses of the people pressing their demands."
BOURGEOISIE  look up translate image
French for capitalists. Marx, Engels and others of their time were devoted students of the capitalist French revolution of 1789 and the Paris Commune of 1871. They used several French words from those studies. Scholarly writers still use French words, but they aren't as clear for working people, and they tend to make the user sound remote and pretentious
BOYCOTT  look up translate image
A tactic often used within the working class against the capitalist class. The workers refrain from some common activity, usually buying a particular product, in hopes of having their demands met.
CAPITAL  look up translate image
An accumulation of commodities which, brought together under the right conditions, can produce new commodities. "Fixed capital" is generally thought of as raw materials, energy, and machinery used in production. Marx usually called it "constant capital." "Variable capital" is labor power. "Capital" is also used by Marx to mean the capitalist class and the entire process of capitalism.
CAPITALIST  look up translate image
A person who makes his/her living primarily from owning the means of production and/or exploiting labor.
CHANGE  look up translate image
Nothing is what it used to be nor what it is becoming. "Quantitative changes" are small increments. "Qualitative changes" are big leaps from one kind of thing to another, usually because of the accumulation of the smaller changes.
CHAUVINISM  look up translate image
An extreme and unreasoning partisanship on behalf of any group to which one belongs, especially when the partisanship includes malice and hatred towards rival groups. Jingoism is the British parallel form of this French word, when referring to nation. A contemporary use of the term in English is in the phrase male chauvinism [from Wikipedia]
CIVILIZATION  look up translate image
Today's stage of social development where production largely comes from modern industry.
CLASS  look up translate image
A large group of people sharing a common interest because of their role in the economy or position in society. See working class, capitalist class, or middle class for the three most important classes in modern America.
CLASS STRUGGLE  look up translate image
is "struggle between classes whose interests are incompatible and irreconcilable. ...This struggle is determined by the production relations established between the two principal classes of capitalist society -- the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, by the fundamental opposition of their economic and political status in society. "The proletariat wages its class struggle in three main forms: economic, political and ideological."
COMMODITY  look up translate image
A material or immaterial item produced for exchange
COMMUNE  look up translate image
Referring to the Paris Commune of 1871, which is often referred to as the first, however brief, successful workers' revolution.
COMMUNISM  look up translate image
is "the social and economic formation which replaces capitalism and which is based on public ownership of the means of production. Socialism is its first, lower phase. The higher phase of this formation is communism proper which is a 'classless social system with one form of public ownership and full social equality of all members of society;' ... ."The building of communism is the ultimate aim of the Communist parties."
CONSERVATIVE  look up translate image
From the root "conserve," it may be used to mean someone who saves rather than spends. However, in American politics, some of the self-styled "conservatives" have advocated far government spending than the so-called "liberals." It is nigh impossible to determine any class consciousness in either word, and consequently they confuse than they enlighten. "Left" and "right" are equally murky in meaning.
COUNTERREVOLUTION  look up translate image
is "active struggle by the reactionary class, which has been or is being deposed in the course of a social revolution, against the new social order and for the preservation or restoration of the outdated social and political system."
CULTURAL REVOLUTION  look up translate image
is "the mastering by the masses of the people of advanced progressive ideology and culture, the creation of a new culture on the basis of critical assimilation of the cultural heritage of the past, of the treasures of world culture."The cultural revolution is a component part of the building of socialism."
DEMOCRACY  look up translate image
"(literally, government by the people), a form of political organization of society and the state under which power legally belongs to the people, and all citizens are equal before the law and enjoy political rights and freedoms, including the right to take part in managing the affairs of state."In a society divided into antagonistic classes the benefits of democracy are enjoyed primarily by the dominant class of exploiters.
DEMOCRATIC CENTRALISM  look up translate image
is "the guiding organizational principle of Marxist-Leninist Communist and workers' parties, government organs and youth, trade union and other public organizations in the socialist countries."Democratic centralism in the Communist Party of the Soviet Union means that all leading Party bodies from top to bottom are elected. . . It means inner-Party democracy, criticism and self-criticism."
DEMOCRATIC SOCIALISM  look up translate image
"a political conception according to which capitalism can be transformed into socialism through democratic means."The proponents of democratic socialism reject the fundamental propositions of Marxism-Leninism on classes and class struggle, socialist revolution and dictatorship of the proletariat and preach the ideas of "people's capitalism" and of the alleged conversion of the capitalist state into the 'welfare state.'
"In their political programmes they do not envisage destruction of the social...(more)
DIALECTICS  look up translate image
is "a science of the development of nature, society and thought which examines things and phenomena from all aspects, in their contradictions and interconnections, in specific historical conditions and in relation to social practice."
DICTATORSHIP  look up translate image
"1) state power expressing the interests of the dominant class and ensuring is political supremacy; 2) autocratic rule; concentration of power in one or several persons as under fascist dictatorship."
DICTATORSHIP OF THE PROLETARIAT  look up translate image
"rule by the working class established as a result of a socialist revolution and maintained through the transition period from capitalism to socialism as essential to the building of socialism."This rule is called proletarian because leadership in society and the state is exercised by the working class which is headed by its Marxist-Leninist party and which acts in alliance with the peasantry and other non-proletarian strata of working people.
"This rule is called a dictatorship because, while...(more)
DISARMAMENT  look up translate image
"a system of measures aimed at completely destroying or substantially reducing or limiting the means of warfare and thus clearing the way to eliminating the danger of the outbreak of war. "
DIVISION OF LABOR  look up translate image
How the labor is divided and arranged in production. It is important in understanding social history because its improvements greatly increased productivity, as also did the addition of new machinery. It was especially noteworthy when assembly line production became the norm.
DOGMATISM  look up translate image
From the idea of religious dogma. Rigid belief not based on fact or real situations
DOMESTIC POLICY  look up translate image
is "policy expressing the relationships between the classes, social groups and nations of a given state and aimed at safeguarding the interests of the dominant classes. "
ECONOMIC DETERMINISM  look up translate image
Overemphasis on economic factors as the sole reasons for social developments. The "Economists" and "Spontaneists" argued that revolutionary activity was not necessary because socialism would replace capitalism sooner or later anyway.
EMPIRICISM  look up translate image
a theory of knowledge that asserts that knowledge comes only or primarily from sensory experience (Wikipedia) From the intro to "Materialism and Socio-Empricism" I gather that Ernst Mach and the Socio-Empiricists used their theory to try to refute materialism. They argued that the material world does not exist outside their sensory experience of it, and therefore does not exist at all, or does not matter.
EXPLOITATION  look up translate image
"the use of other people's labour for the purpose of enriching oneself. Exploitation is based on private ownership of the means of production."
FABIANS  look up translate image
"Fabian society" -- a reformist society founded in 1884 by a group of intellectuals in Britain.
FASCISM  look up translate image
"a political trend which emerged in capitalist countries in the period of the general crisis of capitalism and which expresses the interests of the most reactionary and aggressive forces of the imperialist bourgeoisie. Fascism in power is an openly terroristic dictatorship of these forces. Fascism is characterized by extreme chauvinism, racism, and anti-communism...."
FETISCHISM  look up translate image
Devotion to a single tactic, or set of tactics, without regard to actual effectiveness
FIXED CAPITAL  look up translate image
The wealth that the capitalist spends on such things as machinery and raw materials which must be added to variable capital (workers) to determine his entire cost. Also called "constant capital."
FOREIGN POLICY  look up translate image
is "policy regulating a particular country's relations with other states and peoples in the international arena... The foreign policy of socialist countries is based on the principles of proletarian internationalism and peaceful co-existence of states with different social systems...."
FRAMING  look up translate image
Narrowing the alternatives in an argument so that only the desirable outcomes are allowed. in our section on lies and lying
GRADUALISM  look up translate image
A political theory that all meaningful change must occur in small incremental steps, as opposed to qualitative change in dialectical materialism. See Wikipedia, which quotes Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, comparing it to a "tranquilizing drug." Usually associated with revisionism.
HEGEMONY  look up translate image
is "leadership, preponderance in power and in influence. The hegemony of the proletariat means the latter's leadership in relation to other social classes in revolutionary struggle to overthrow the rule of the monopoly bourgeoisie, and after the victory of the socialist revolution in building socialism and communism."
HISTORICAL MATERIALISM  look up translate image
Understanding history by analyzing material facts, particularly the dominant methods of production.
IDEALISM  look up translate image
is "one of the two principal trends in philosophy which, in opposition to materialism, holds that the idea, spirit, or consciousness are primary and that nature, being, or matter are secondary. Idealism is the philosophical expression of a religious understanding of the world."There are two varieties of idealism, subjective and objective. Subjective idealism regards the world as not existing independently of man's consciousness and it considers that the only reality is individual consciousness,...(more)
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Glossary of communist terms
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Created by admin
Created on 2013-05-10 22:15:06
Number of terms 145
Last added Working Class by admin
2013-09-03 20:07:38
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