Rise and Fall of Communism in Russia

Essay by Anonymous UserUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, January 1996

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Communism in the Soviet Union and why it Failed

Communism is defined as 'a system of political and economic organization in which property is owned by the community and all citizens share in the enjoyment of the common wealth, more or less according to their need.' In 1917 the rise of power in the Marxist-inspired Bolsheviks in Russia along with the consolidation of power by Vladimir Lenin and Joseph Stalin, the word communism came to mean a totalitarian system controlled by a single political party. This came to justify that the means of production is controlled and the wealth is distributed with the goal of producing a classless or possibly a stateless society. The ideological meaning of communism arose in 1848 with the publication of the Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. They believed that communism is inevitable and is an outcome of the historical process.

They believed that the 'struggle between an exploiting class, the capatalists at present age, and an exploited class, the workers, would enter a crucial stage in the period of capitalism where industrialization occurs and that the effects of industrialization is to heighten and intensify the internal contradictions in capitalism.' To put it bluntly they believed that the ownership of industry would be in fewer and fewer hands where the workers would plunge into a state of ever-increasing misery. These impoverished workers grow in numbers and organize themselves into a political party which would lead a revolution in which they dispose of the capitalists. The proletariat would establish a society governed by a ' dictatorship of the proletariat' based on communal ownership of the wealth. According to Marx this phase of human society is referred to as socialism. Communism is the final transcendence of this revolution in...