Communism is a political and economic ideology that seeks to create a classless society where all property is publicly owned, and each person works and is paid according to their abilities and needs. This vision is based on the works of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels in the mid-19th century.
Communism contends that the capitalist system, with its inherent class struggle between the bourgeoisie (the owning class) and the proletariat (the working class), leads to social inequality and exploitation of workers. To resolve this, communism advocates for the abolition of private ownership of the means of production, such as factories, land, resources, mines, and mills, and the establishment of a society in which wealth and power are distributed equally.
The ultimate goal of communism is to construct a stateless, classless society where everyone contributes to the production of goods and services according to their ability and receives according to their needs. The governance of such a society would be based on communal ownership rather than a centralized state apparatus.
Communist parties and movements strive to apply the principles of communism, as outlined by Marx and Engels, in their respective societies. Their objective is to overthrow the existing capitalist structures and replace them with a socialist system, which they see as a stepping stone towards a classless, stateless society – the ultimate goal of communism.
The most significant communist movement in history was perhaps the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia in 1917, led by Vladimir Lenin. This movement resulted in the formation of the Soviet Union, the world’s first state to be governed by a communist party.
Since then, there have been numerous other communist movements around the world, some of which have led to the establishment of communist states, such as China, Cuba, Vietnam, and North Korea. There are also numerous smaller communist parties and movements in various countries, some in power and others in opposition.