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date: 03 December 2021

Socialism, 

Source:
The Oxford Companion to United States History
Author(s):
Timothy Messer-KruseTimothy Messer-Kruse

a political ideology, rejects the private ownership of land, factories, and other means of production as well as the wage-labor system and the competitive market economy. Socialist beliefs and movements, though dizzyingly varied, have generally fallen into four groups: communitarian, revolutionary socialist, democratic socialist, and syndicalist. Communitarianism, which has the longest pedigree, can be traced to eighteenth-century religious movements such as the Shakers, who reacted to a commercializing society by retreating into rural settlements, holding their property communally, and hoping to reform society by example. As antebellum Americans felt the first shocks of the emerging industrial order, some embraced European alternatives to capitalism, from the paternalistic industrialism of Robert Owen to Charles Fourier's utopian blueprints for communal cooperatives.... ...

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