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Difference between Socialism and Communism

Difference between Socialism and Communism

Socialism vs. Communism

What is Difference between Socialism and Communism? Socialism and communism are two ideological systems that emerge in response to the Industrial Revolution. During this revolution, many capitalists who owned factories became extremely wealthy exploiting their workers; who were paid unfair wages while working tirelessly for long working hours, sometimes without adequate lunch and ventilation. It is in this context that these two ideological systems arise, which was aimed at improving the situation of workers and boosting economic growth through different strategies.

Difference between Socialism and Communism

Although they have certain similarities, there are many differences between socialism and communism. Next we will see what they are.


Socialism is a theory or system of social organization that advocates the vesting of the ownership and control of the means of production and distribution of capital, land … throughout society as a whole. It is less extreme and more flexible than communism.

The main difference between these two systems is that socialism focuses especially on the economic aspect, whereas communism is more related to the political system. Both are production systems that focus on centralized planning and the use of public property as a means of production.

Socialism believes that planned social control must be implemented to manage the economy.

It arises from capitalism itself as a form of new society. He believes in the achievement of a classless society through capitalism and private property. That is, it does not necessarily reject these last two elements.

Socialists believe that economic control can be achieved by involving as many people as possible in the implementation of a classless society. According to the socialist ideal, production must be distributed according to the work of the people, the quantity and the quality of the work done. However, they consider it important to have sufficient production to meet the needs of all.

Some examples of socialist states, which have socialist policies in combination with a capitalist economy and a democratic political system, are:

  • Guyana
  • Tanzania
  • Sri Lanka
  • Portuguese Republic
  • India

These countries have incorporated some socialist ideas into their economic systems. These include greater benefits for workers.


The word “communism” comes from the Latin “communes”, which means “common” or “belonging to all”. The ideal of the communist system is a free society, without division or alignment; where people are free from oppression and scarcity. It is a theory and a system of social organization based on the exploitation of all goods in common. The property instead of being private happens to be of the community or the State.

In this case, all economic and social activity is controlled by a totalitarian state; dominated by a single, self-perpetuating political party. As stated earlier, communism is associated with the political system; it is not limited to economics. The communist idea is that centralized organizations must manage the economy to achieve a classless society, in which all are equal.

Unlike socialism, communism believes that only by putting an end to capitalism and private property can a classless society be achieved; for this reason they say that all property, factories … must be state or central government property. The Communists believe that a small group of people should have responsibility for managing the means of production.

Another thing in which it differs with socialism is that in this case the production is distributed according to the needs of the people; not by the quantity or quality of the work of each one. The communist ideal says that people will work in communist society, not because they feel it as an obligation, but because they see it as a responsibility.

In conclusion, t ante communism and socialism emerged as methods designed to improve the lives of ordinary people, to distribute equally wealth among the people and therefore; create a society without classes. In practicality, however, neither he has been able to achieve its objective ideal.

Socialism and communism have been criticized by the capitalists who claim that the two systems have distorted prices and sustained technological progress slow or stagnant, also they criticize those reducing incentives, prosperity and the limited viability.

In the terminology of modern communism it has become synonymous with policies of states controlled by party’s communists, regardless of the practical content of the economic system today. Examples of such states include the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, the People’s Republic of China, the Soviet Union, Cuba, Cambodia, and Laos.

Key Differences between Socialism and Communism

  • Socialism focuses especially on the economic system and its main objective is to distribute resources to each person according to their work. On the other hand, communism is an economic and political system that aims to distribute resources to each person according to their needs.
  • Socialism arises within capitalism and is not opposed to private property, while communism seeks to end capitalism and private property.
  • In socialism it is proposed that all society as a whole be involved in its construction and in the management of the means of production; whereas communism proposes that only a select group (representing the state) control the means of production.

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