The Evolution of Communist Theory and Practice

Part one Karl Marx and the Origins of Communism

In order to truly understand communism, one must go back to its conception. Communism was first thought of during the Industrial Revolution. Back then, few people were able to enjoy common luxuries, and the rest were treated unequally, had little to no rights, and had almost nothing to their name. Communism also called out the rich for their hypocrisy, and constantly praised the working class. To the working class communism probably seemed like a promise that life will get better, and that they will finally be able to live with everything they need and have rights.

The founder of communism was Karl Marx. In his opinion communism was about everyone being equal under the same system, and people being able to work towards the common good, and being able take whatever resources they want when they need it. Marx also believed that a revolution would happen as well in order to start communism. According to Marx, the proletariats, or working class, would over throw the rich and factory owners in a violent and spontenious fashion. After the revolution different social classes would no longer exist and the poor and rich would be equal.

Communism- a social system in which everyone is in control of the economy

Industrial Revolution- time where a country becomes more advanced, and technology becomes more available, and useful

Karl Marx- the founder of Communism

Proletariat- a member of the working class

A biography about Karl Marx:

Part Two-- Lenin and the Russian Revolution

During and even before the Russian Revolution, Communism was becoming popular once again. A man by the name of Lenin began posting articles praising it, and the Russians became tired of their broken government. Many of their rulers during that time discriminated agaisnt them, took away their rights, and even stopped some protests. When the Russian Revolution happened, the people wanted a better government, and believed that Communism was a better style for them. Soon after the revolutionists made Communism the official way on how Russia would be run.

Lenin believed that communism should revolve around the government controling the economy and how infomation is distrubted. However, he also allowed his people sell their excess items instead of giving them up to the community. He also allowed a handful of people to be able to own their own buiness' and factories. A lot of Lenin's beliefs were similar to Marx, since both thought that the working class would overthrow the rich, and that communism was the best system. However Lenin differed from Marx, since he said that the working class would need to be lead, and the revolution wouldn't happen spontaneously. He also allowed small buisness and excess crops to be sold, as noted earlier, which Marx didn't believe in.

Russian Revolution- A time period in Russia in which the Russians overthrew their government and put Communism in its place.

A biography about Lenin:

Part Three--Mao Zedong and Communist China

The Chinese felt that their nation was falling apart, and they saw Communism as an answer to their problems, just like Russia did. The Chinese were constantly defeated by other Imperial countries, and to add to their weakness, didn't even control their own economy. The Imperialst nations that defeated them did. Then the Treaty of Versailes took away land that the Chinese believed they deserved. People began to protest in the May Fourth Movement against this decision. Later on Mao Zedong forms the Chinese Communist Party, in which Lenin backed up to help China become Communist. After his opponents fled, Zedong declared that China was Communist, and managed to get almost all of the new generation to agree with his version of Communism.

Mao Zedong believed that everyone should take after the working class, and follow their beliefs and customs. He also believed in destroying everyhting that didn't agree with Communism. Zedongs take on communism was very similar to Marx, both believed that the working class would overthrow the rich, and that it would take place in rural areas. They also said that all resources should go towards the people. However Zedong took everything to the extreme. He sent out to destroy everything that was before Communist China, and put his plans before his people, which Marx never said or thought.

Imperialism- When countries believe that their beliefs and customs should be imposed on other nations

Treaty of Versaile- A treaty that ended World War 1, and punished Germany

May Fourth Movement- Protest against the land distribution that was in the Treaty of Versaile

Chinese Communist Party- the political party in China that Mao Zedong was part of, and wanted China to become Communist.

A summary about Zedongs Communist of China:

Part Four--The Negatives of Communism

Although Communism sounded like the best system in both cases, it really lead to devastation in each country. In Russia, Lenin mangaged to run it successfully. However Stalin, his succesor, ruined Russia with his destructive five year plans which caused famine and death. He also took away the equality and resources that were promised to the Russians. Eventually Communist Russia became a shell of what it was under Lenin. In China Communism also decayed. Zedong constantly destroyed anything before his rule, and, like Stalin, also had plans that caused the death of many civilians. He also hypnotised the youth into supporting him, and chased out the people who didn't support him. Meanwhile in Italy, Mussolini hated the Communists. To him they were a threat to his rule, and overthrew many of them from seats of power after he became ruler. He even many of them while he was ruler since he blamed them for the results of World War one.

Stalin- Lenin's succesor, he had many plans to support the development of Russoa

Mussolini- The fascist leader of Italy. He got in power by force.

World War One- A war where the entire world was involved. Many of its results turned Russia and China Communist.


A table on the ammount of deaths under various leaders:

Part Five--China a Modern Day Communist Country

Even after forty eight years, China is still a Communist nation. Even if the majority of Chinese buisness's aren't run by the government, its banks still are. One of the main parts of Communism is that the government owns the means of production, and since it runs and owns the banks, that still qualifies it as Communist. China also has single party rule and does not allow other parties to run. In Communism, only one party is in government, and there are no other parties to vote for. China's government also controls what information is distrubted to its people, and how the information is reported. In Communism the government controls the information trade, and what info is released.

However, China is very different to the originial version of Communism thought up by Marx. In China almost all buisness is allowed to be run by the people, and the country also encourages monopolies and people making money for themselves. China also has different classes, and not everyone is equal, which goes against Marx's view of Communism. China also doesn't give everything the people need, and the citizens must provide for themselves.

A book about Communism failing:

Part Six--My Opinion about Communism

In my honest opinion Communism sounds nice and seems like it would work on paper. However in real life, it usually doesn't work like it does on paper. With the exception of Lenin, any leader following Communism usually destorys or weakens their countries, believing that their plans would help their country. To me Captilism seems to be the best system. Anyone can benefit from this system, and with hard work people will get rewards for their work. Eventually Communism will be just a memory, with very few people even practicing it, since more likely than not, the system is destined to fail.

Nicolas Villaneda

Per. 3

3/9/14

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