cs and economics.
Bolsheviks (BOHL shuh vihks, or buhl shee VEEKS) were members of a group that took power in Russia in 1917. The name comes from the Russian word bolshenstvo. Means majority. In the early 1900’s the Russian Social Democratic labour Party split into two main groups. VI Lenin led one group, which believed that a single centralized party of professional revolutionaries should lead the revolution in Russia. He thought this party could seize power with the help of the workers and peasants. The other group believed in a broader revolutionary party open to anyone who supported its goals.
At a party meeting in London in 1913, Lenin’s group was clearly in the minority. But it gained a majority vote when seven delegates left the meeting over a disagreement on questions of representation. Leninists the won control of two powerful party organs – the newspaper and the Central Committee. Lenin began calling his follower Bolsheviks and his opponents Mensheviks (people in the minority) His group became the Russian Communist Party (Bolsheviks) in March 1918.
The term communism has several meanings. Communism can be a form of government, an economic system, a revolutionary movement, a way of life, or a goal or ideal. Communism is also a theory about how and why history develops, and in what direction it is developing. These ideas were developed mainly by VI Lenin from the writing of Karl Marx. Lenin was a Russian revolutionary leader of the early 1900’s and Marx was a German social philosopher – a thinker who studies social and human behavior of the 1800’s.
According to communist, their long range goal is a society that provides equality and economic security for all people. To achieve this goal, communism has required government ownership rather than private ownership of land, factories and other economic activity and strict single rule and by a single party with communist ideals are features of communist governments.
During the 1900’2, millions of people lives under communist rule. In 1917, Russia became the first state to be controlled by the Communist party. Russia joined with three other territories in 1992 to form the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (U.S.S.R.) or Soviet Union. BY 1940, 12 more republics were added and the Soviet Union had become one of the most powerful countries in the world.
After World War II (1939-1945) Soviets troops occupied most of Eastern Europe. The Soviet Union was thus able to help communist governments take power in that region. In 1949, the Chinese Communist Party won a civil was for control of China.
The rapid spread of communism after World Ward II brought about a struggle of international power and influence between the communist countries and non-communist countries. This struggle was known as the Cold War. Events in the 1980’s and the late 1990’s marked the end of the Cold War. These events included the collapse of several communist countries in Eastern Europe in 1989, and the fall of communism in the Soviet Union in 1991. By 1992, communist parties remained in power in only a small number of countries, including China, Cuba, Laos, North Korea and Vietnam.
The terms communism and socialism are frequently confused. Communist and socialist both seek public ownership or regulation of the principal means of production. But most socialist favour peaceful and legal methods to achieve their goals, while communism has often used force without regard to law. Socialism may or may not be based on the teachings of Marx. Communism is based on the teachings of both Marx and Lenin.
Communism in theory.
The communism that developed during the q900’s was based on the theories of Marx as interpreted and modified by Lenin. These theories were frequently called Marxism-Leninism.
The word communism comes from the Latin word, communis, which means common or belonging to all. The idea of communal property dates at least from the time of the early Greeks. In the 200’s B.C. the Greek philosopher Plato discussed communal ides in the Republic. In that work Plato proposed that a ruling class should own everything in common and put the welfare of the state above the all personal desires. Later a number of early Christian groups had some form of community ownership of property.
Over the centuries, many philosophers and reformers supported such communist ideals as community ownership and social equality. The in the 1800’2 Marx transformed communism into a revolutionary movement.
Under Lenin, who led Russia from 1917 until his death in 1942, for a short time, he let peasants keep their farmland they had seized. He permitted workers to control the factories and to play important roles in local government. But the government soon tightened control and forced the peasants to give the government most of their products. The government also took over Russian industries and set up central management bureaus to run them. In addition, the state created a secret police called the Cheka.
Soon after Lenin came to power in 1917, the Bolsheviks seized control of Russia., Russia made peace with Germany, but from 1918 to 1920 Russia was torn by civil war between communist and non communist. The communist defeated their rivals, who were divided and poorly organized. From the start, Lenin used force and terror against his political opponents. By 1921, conditions had become disastrous throughout the country. Peasant and sailor revolts broke out. The world war, revolution, and civil war had brought Russia near economic collapse.
In 1921, realizing the need for change in policy, Lenin introduced the New Economic Policy (NEP). The NEP called for communist to cooperate with certain groups that were considered enemies of communism. These included shopkeepers, peasants, engineers, scholars and army officers. Russia economy recovered steadily under the NEP. In 1922, the country became known as the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (U.S.S.R) or the Soviet Union.
By the Lenin dies in 1924, the Soviet Union had become a one-party state. All non communist political parties had been banned, and all public organizations such as professional associations and labour unions – had become tools of the communist.
By the late 1970’s communism was in crisis in many parts of the world. The population of Communist China had almost doubled under Lao Zedong, and the Chinese Government was barely able to provide adequate food for its people. Dissatisfaction with communism in the Soviet controlled countries of Eastern Europe growing stronger.
The Soviet Union was confronted with serious economic problems, a dissatisfied middle class, and disappointment with the communist political system among key members of the political elite. Hostility among the country’s numerous ethnic groups had smoldered for years. Many non-Russian resented the power of ethnic Russians and began to demand more control over their own affairs. In addition, corruption was growing among members of the communist party bureaucracy. In Western Europe, Communist parties faced declining electoral support by the late 1970’s
By the late 1980’s most communist countries had experienced long periods or little of economic growth. Centralized planning proved to be inefficient, and it hindered development of new technologies. As a result, most communist countries could not compete economically with Japan and the Western industrial powers.
Communism was in retreat around the world as a system of government in the early 1990’s. Its importance as a political and economic theory had also been reduced.
In 1992, communist held a monopoly on power in only a few countries, but the most of them were introducing economic reforms. Hard line communist parties still continued to exist in some countries, though they had relatively minor representation and influence in legislative bodies. The once powerful communist party dropped its Marxist policies. Memberships declined and most communist parties had identified themselves as socialist parties and abandoned hard line communist principles.A party that has always been there and that has always and forever had the interest of the people at its very centre!