Social democracy is a political, social and economic ideology that
supports economic and social interventions to promote social justice
within the framework of a liberal democratic polity and capitalist
economy. The protocols and norms used to accomplish this involve: a
commitment to representative and participatory democracy; measures for
income redistribution and regulation of the economy in the general
interest; and welfare state provisions.
Social democracy thus
aims to create the conditions for capitalism to lead to greater
democratic, egalitarian and solidaristic outcomes; and is often
associated with the set of socioeconomic policies that became
prominent in Northern and Western Europe—particularly the Nordic
model in the Nordic countries—during the latter half of the 20th
Social democracy originated as a political ideology that advocated an
evolutionary and peaceful transition from capitalism to socialism
using established political processes in contrast to the revolutionary
approach to transition associated with orthodox Marxism. In the
early post-war era in Western Europe, social democratic parties
rejected the Stalinist political and economic model then current in
the Soviet Union, committing themselves either to an alternative path
to socialism or to a compromise between capitalism and socialism.
In this period, social democrats embraced a mixed economy based on the
predominance of private property, with only a minority of essential
utilities and public services under public ownership. As a result,
social democracy became associated with Keynesian economics, state
interventionism and the welfare state, while abandoning the prior goal
of replacing the capitalist system (factor markets, private property
and wage labor) with a qualitatively different socialist economic
Modern social democracy is characterized by a commitment to policies
aimed at curbing inequality, oppression of underprivileged groups and
poverty, including support for universally accessible public
services like care for the elderly, child care, education, health care
and workers' compensation. The social democratic movement also has
strong connections with the labour movement and trade unions and is
supportive of collective bargaining rights for workers as well as
measures to extend democratic decision-making beyond politics into the
economic sphere in the form of co-determination for employees and
other economic stakeholders.
The Third Way, which ostensibly aims to fuse liberal economics with
social democratic welfare policies, is an ideology that developed in
the 1990s and is sometimes associated with social democratic parties,
but some analysts have instead characterized the
Third Way as an
effectively neoliberal movement.
1 Development of social democracy
First International era (1863–1889)
Second International era: reform or revolution dispute
1.3 World Wars, revolutions, counterrevolutions and Great Depression
Cold War era and
1.5 Response to neoliberalism (1979–1990s)
Third Way (1990s–2010s)
1.7 Decline in
Western Europe (2010s–present)
3 Notable social democrats
4 See also
7 Further reading
8 External links
Development of social democracy
Part of a series on
History of socialism
Socialist calculation debate
Socialist mode of production
Calculation in kind
Commune (model of government)
Material balance planning
Production for use
Socialism in One Country
To each according
to his contribution / needs
Socialist market economy
History by country
Henri de Saint-Simon
Mary Harris Jones
Fred M. Taylor
W. E. B. Du Bois
Luis Emilio Recabarren
G. D. H. Cole
Léopold Sédar Senghor
Gamal Abdel Nasser
Martin Luther King Jr.
(International Workingmen's Association)
Labour and Socialist International
World Federation of
International Union of
World Socialist Movement
of the Fourth International
Criticism of capitalism
List of socialist economists
Socialism and LGBT rights
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Development of German Social
Democracy before the Second World War
During late 19th and early 20th centuries, social democracy was a
movement that aimed to replace private ownership with social ownership
of the means of production, taking influences from both
the supporters of Ferdinand Lassalle. By 1868–1869,
become the official theoretical basis of the first social democratic
party established in Europe, the Social Democratic Workers' Party of
In the early 20th century, the German Social democratic politician
Eduard Bernstein rejected the revolutionary and materialist
foundations of classical and orthodox
Marxism and advanced the
position that socialism should be grounded in ethical and moral
arguments and was to be achieved through gradual legislative reform.
Influenced by Bernstein, following the split between reformists and
revolutionary socialists in the Second International, social
democratic parties rejected revolutionary politics in favor of
parliamentary reform while remaining committed to socialization.
In this period, social democracy became associated with reformist
socialism. Under the influence of politicians like
Carlo Rosselli in
Italy, social democrats began disassociating themselves from Marxism
altogether and embraced liberal socialism, appealing to morality
instead of any consistent systematic, scientific or materialist
Social democracy made appeals to communitarian,
corporatist and sometimes nationalist sentiments while rejecting the
economic and technological determinism generally characteristic of
Marxism and economic liberalism. By the post-World War II
period, most social democrats in Europe had abandoned their
ideological connection to
Marxism and shifted their emphasis toward
social policy reform in place of transition from capitalism to
First International era (1863–1889)
The origins of social democracy have been traced to the 1860s, with
the rise of the first major working-class party in Europe, the General
German Workers' Association (ADAV) founded by Ferdinand Lassalle.
1864 saw the founding of the International Workingmen's Association,
also known as the First International. It brought together socialists
of various stances and initially occasioned a conflict between Karl
Marx and the anarchists led by
Mikhail Bakunin over the role of the
state in socialism, with Bakunin rejecting any role for the state.
Another issue in the
First International was the role of
Although Lassalle was not a Marxist, he was influenced by the theories
of Marx and
Friedrich Engels and he accepted the existence and
importance of class struggle. However, unlike Marx's and Engels's The
Communist Manifesto, Lassalle promoted class struggle in a more
moderate form. While Marx viewed the state negatively as an
instrument of class rule that should only exist temporarily upon the
rise to power of the proletariat and then dismantled, Lassalle
accepted the state. Lassalle viewed the state as a means through which
workers could enhance their interests and even transform the society
to create an economy based on worker-run cooperatives. Lassalle's
strategy was primarily electoral and reformist, with Lassalleans
contending that the working class needed a political party that fought
above all for universal adult male suffrage.
The ADAV's party newspaper was called Der Sozialdemokrat ("The Social
Democrat"). Marx and Engels responded to the title "Sozialdemocrat"
with distaste, Engels once writing: "But what a title:
Sozialdemokrat!...Why don't they simply call it The Proletarian". Marx
agreed with Engels that "Sozialdemokrat" was a bad title. Although
the origins of the name "Sozialdemokrat" actually traced back to
Marx's German translation in 1848 of the French political party known
as the Partie Democrat-Socialist into Partei der Sozialdemokratie,
Marx did not like this French party because he viewed it as dominated
by the middle class and associated the word "Sozialdemokrat" with that
party. There was a Marxist faction within the ADAV represented by
Wilhelm Liebknecht who became one of the editors of the Die
Faced with opposition from liberal capitalists to his socialist
policies, Lassalle controversially attempted to forge a tactical
alliance with the conservative aristocratic Junkers due to their
anti-bourgeois attitudes, as well as with Prussian Chancellor Otto von
Bismarck. Friction in the ADAV arose over Lassalle's policy of a
friendly approach to Bismarck that had assumed incorrectly that
Bismarck in turn would be friendly towards them. This approach was
opposed by the party's Marxists, including Liebknecht. Opposition
in the ADAV to Lassalle's friendly approach to Bismarck's government
resulted in Liebknecht resigning from his position as editor of Die
Sozialdemokrat and leaving the ADAV in 1865. In 1869, Liebknecht,
along with Marxist August Bebel, founded the SDAP, which was founded
as a merger of three groups: the petit-bourgeois Saxon People's Party
(SVP), a faction of the ADAV; and members of the League of German
Workers' Associations (VDA).
Though the SDAP was not officially Marxist, it was the first major
working-class organization to be led by Marxists and Marx and Engels
had direct association with the party. The party adopted stances
similar to those adopted by Marx at the First International. There was
intense rivalry and antagonism between the SDAP and the ADAV, with the
SDAP being highly hostile to the Prussian government while the ADAV
pursued a reformist and more cooperative approach. This rivalry
reached its height involving the two parties' stances on the
Franco-Prussian War, with the SDAP refusing to support Prussia's war
effort by claiming it was an imperialist war pursued by Bismarck,
while the ADAV supported the war.
A barricade in Paris in March 1871, set up by revolutionary forces of
the Paris Commune
In the aftermath of the defeat of France in the Franco-Prussian War,
revolution broke out in France, with revolutionary army members along
with working-class revolutionaries founding the Paris Commune. The
Paris Commune appealed both to the citizens of Paris regardless of
class, as well as to the working class who were a major base of
support for the government by appealing to them via militant rhetoric.
In spite of such militant rhetoric to appeal to the working class, the
Commune also received substantial support from the middle-class
bourgeoisie of Paris, including shopkeepers and merchants. The
Commune, in part due to its sizable number neo-Proudhonians and
neo-Jacobins in the Central Committee, declared that the Commune was
not opposed to private property, but rather hoped to create the widest
distribution of it. The political composition of the Commune
included twenty-five neo-Jacobins, fifteen to twenty neo-Proudhonians
and protosyndicalists, nine or ten Blanquists, a variety of radical
republicans and a few Internationalists influenced by Marx.
In the aftermath of the collapse of the
Paris Commune in 1871, Marx
Paris Commune in his work
The Civil War in France
The Civil War in France (1871)
for its achievements in spite of its pro-bourgeois influences and
called it an excellent model of the dictatorship of the proletariat in
practice, as it had dismantled the apparatus of the bourgeois state,
including its huge bureaucracy; military; and its executive, judicial
and legislative institutions; and replaced it with a working-class
state with broad popular support. However, the collapse of the
Commune and the persecution of its anarchist supporters had the effect
of weakening the influence of the Bakuninist anarchists in the First
International, which resulted in Marx expelling the weakened rival
Bakuninists from the International a year later.
In Britain, the achievement of legalisation of trade unions under the
Trade Union Act 1871
Trade Union Act 1871 drew British trade unionists to believe that
working conditions could be improved through parliamentary means.
At the Hague Congress of 1872, Marx made a remark, admitting that
while there are countries "where the workers can attain their goal by
peaceful means" in most countries on the Continent "the lever of our
revolution must be force".
You know that the institutions, mores, and traditions of various
countries must be taken into consideration, and we do not deny that
there are countries—such as America, England, and if I were more
familiar with your institutions, I would perhaps also add
Holland—where the workers can attain their goal by peaceful means.
This being the case, we must also recognize the fact that in most
countries on the Continent the lever of our revolution must be force;
it is force to which we must someday appeal in order to erect the rule
In 1875, Marx attacked the
Gotha Program that became the program of
Social Democratic Party
Social Democratic Party of Germany (SDP) in the same year in his
Critique of the Gotha Program. Marx was not optimistic that Germany at
the time was not open to a peaceful means to achieve socialism,
especially after German Chancellor
Otto von Bismarck
Otto von Bismarck had enacted
Anti-Socialist Laws in 1878. At the time of the Anti-Socialist
Laws beginning to be drafted but not yet published in 1878, Marx spoke
of the possibilities of legislative reforms by an elected government
composed of working-class legislative members, but also of the
willingness to use force should force be used against the working
If in England, for instance, or the United States, the working class
were to gain a majority in Parliament or Congress, they could, by
lawful means, rid themselves of such laws and institutions as impeded
their development, though they could only do insofar as society had
reached a sufficiently mature development. However, the "peaceful"
movement might be transformed into a "forcible" one by resistance on
the part of those interested in restoring the former state of affairs;
if (as in the American Civil War and French Revolution) they are put
down by force, it is as rebels against "lawful" force.
In his study England in 1845 and in 1885 (1885), Engels wrote a study
that analysed the changes in the British class system from 1845 to
1885, in which he commended the
Chartist movement for being
responsible for the achievement of major breakthroughs for the working
class. Engels stated that during this time Britain's industrial
bourgeoisie had learned "that the middle class can never obtain full
social and political power over the nation except by the help of the
working class". In addition, he noticed "a gradual change over the
relations between the two classes". This change he described was
manifested in the change of laws in Britain that granted political
changes in favour of the working class that the
Chartist movement had
demanded for years:
The 'Abolition of the Property Qualification' and 'Vote by Ballot' are
now the law of the land. The Reform Acts of 1867 and 1884 make a near
approach to 'universal suffrage,' at least such as it now exists in
Sidney Webb, a prominent Fabian socialist
A major non-Marxian influence on social democracy came from the
Fabian Society founded in 1884 by
Frank Podmore that
emphasised the need for a gradualist evolutionary and reformist
approach to the achievement of socialism. The
Fabian Society was
founded as a splinter group from the
Fellowship of the New Life due to
opposition within that group to socialism. Unlike Marxism,
Fabianism did not promote itself as a working-class-led movement and
it largely had middle-class members. The
Fabian Society published
the Fabian Essays on
Socialism (1889) that was substantially written
by George Bernard Shaw. Shaw referred to Fabians as "all Social
Democrats, with a common confiction [sic] of the necessity of vesting
the organization of industry and the material of production in a State
identified with the whole people by complete Democracy". Other
important early Fabians included Sidney Webb, who from 1887 to 1891
wrote the bulk of the Society's official policies. Fabianism would
become a major influence on the British labour movement.
Second International era: reform or revolution dispute
The modern social democratic movement came into being through a
division within the socialist movement: this division can be described
as a parting of ways between those who insisted upon political
revolution as a precondition for the achievement of socialist goals
and those who maintained that a gradual or evolutionary path to
socialism was both possible and desirable.
The influence of the
Fabian Society in Britain grew in the British
socialist movement in the 1890s, especially within the Independent
Labour Party (ILP) founded in 1893. Important ILP members were
affiliated with the Fabian Society, including
Keir Hardie and Ramsay
MacDonald—the future British Prime Minister. Fabian influence in
British government affairs also emerged, such as Fabian member Sidney
Webb being chosen to take part in writing what became the Minority
Report of the Royal Commission on Labour. While Hardie was
nominally a member of the Fabian Society, as leader of the ILP he had
close relations with certain Fabians, such as Shaw, while he was
antagonistic to others such as the Webbs. As ILP leader, Hardie
rejected revolutionary politics while declaring that he believed the
party's tactics should be "as constitutional as the Fabians".
Another important Fabian figure who joined the ILP was Robert
Blatchford who wrote the work Merrie England (1894) that endorsed
municipal socialism. Merrie England was a major publication that
sold 750,000 copies within one year. In Merrie England, Blatchford
distinguished two types of socialism: an "ideal socialism" and a
"practical socialism". Blatchford's practical socialism was a
state socialism that identified existing state enterprise such as the
Post Office run by the municipalities as a demonstration of practical
socialism in action, he claimed that practical socialism should
involve the extension of state enterprise to the means of production
as common property of the people. While endorsing state socialism,
Blatchford's Merrie England and his other writings were influenced by
anarchist communist William Morris—as Blatchford himself attested
to—and Morris' anarchist communist themes are present in Merrie
Shaw published the Report on Fabian Policy (1896) that declared: "The
Fabian Society does not suggest that the State should monopolize
industry as against private enterprise or individual initiative".
Major developments in social democracy as a whole emerged with the
Eduard Bernstein as a proponent of reformist socialism
and an adherent of Marxism. Bernstein had resided in Britain in
the 1880s at the time when Fabianism was arising and is believed to
have been strongly influenced by Fabianism. However, he publicly
denied having strong Fabian influences on his thought. Bernstein
did acknowledge that he was influenced by Kantian epistemological
skepticism while he rejected Hegelianism. He and his supporters urged
Social Democratic Party
Social Democratic Party of Germany to merge Kantian ethics with
Marxian political economy. On the role of Kantian criticism within
socialism, Bernstein said:
The method of this great philosopher [Kant] can serve as a pointer to
the satisfying solution to our problem. Of course we don’t have to
slavishly adhere to Kant's form, but we must match his method to the
nature of our own subject [socialism], displaying the same critical
spirit. Our critique must be direct against both a scepticism that
undermines all theoretical thought, and a dogmatism that relies on
The term "revisionist" was applied to Bernstein by his critics who
referred to themselves as "orthodox" Marxists, even though Bernstein
claimed that his principles were consistent with Marx's and Engels'
stances, especially in their later years when they advocated that
socialism should be achieved through parliamentary democratic means
wherever possible. Bernstein and his faction of revisionists
Marxism and particularly its founder Karl Kautsky
for having disregarded Marx's view of the necessity of evolution of
capitalism to achieve socialism by replacing it with an "either/or"
polarization between capitalism and socialism, claiming that Kautsky
disregarded Marx's emphasis on the role of parliamentary democracy in
achieving socialism, as well as criticizing Kautsky for his
idealisation of state socialism. However, Kautsky did not deny a
role for democracy in the achievement of socialism, as he claimed that
Marx's dictatorship of the proletariat was not a form of government
that rejected democracy as critics had claimed it was, but a state of
affairs that Marx expected would arise should the proletariat gain
power and be faced with fighting a violent reactionary opposition.
Bernstein had held close association to Marx and Engels, but he saw
flaws in Marxian thinking and began such criticism when he
investigated and challenged the Marxian materialist theory of
history. He rejected significant parts of Marxian theory that were
Hegelian metaphysics and he also rejected the Hegelian
dialectical perspective. Bernstein distinguished between early
Marxism as being its immature form: as exemplified by The Communist
Manifesto written by Marx and Engels in their youth, that he opposed
for what he regarded as its violent Blanquist tendencies; and later
Marxism as being its mature form that he supported.
Bernstein declared that the massive and homogeneous working class
claimed in the Communist Manifesto did not exist and that—contrary
to claims of a proletarian majority emerging—the middle class was
growing under capitalism and not disappearing as Marx had claimed.
Bernstein noted that the working class was not homogeneous but
heterogeneous, with divisions and factions within it, including
socialist and non-socialist trade unions. In his work Theories of
Surplus Value, Marx himself later in his life acknowledged that the
middle class was not disappearing, but due to the popularity of the
Communist Manifesto and the obscurity of Theories of Surplus Value
Marx's acknowledgement of this error is not well known.
Bernstein criticized Marxism's concept of "irreconciliable class
conflicts" and Marxism's hostility to liberalism. He challenged
Marx's position on liberalism by claiming that liberal democrats and
social democrats held common grounds that he claimed could be utilized
to create a "socialist republic". He believed that economic class
disparities between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat would
gradually be eliminated through legal reforms and economic
redistribution programs. Bernstein rejected the Marxian principle
of dictatorship of the proletariat, claiming that gradualist
democratic reforms will improve the rights of the working class.
According to Bernstein—unlike orthodox Marxism—social democracy
did not seek to create a socialism separate from bourgeois society,
but instead sought to create a common development based on Western
humanism. The development of socialism under social democracy does
not seek to rupture existing society and its cultural traditions, but
to act as an enterprise of extension and growth. Furthermore, he
believed that class cooperation was a preferable course to achieve
socialism, rather than class conflict.
Bernstein responded to critics that he was not destroying Marxism, but
claimed that he was "modernizing Marxism" that was required "to
separate the vital parts of [Marx's] theory from its outdated
accessories". He asserted his support for the Marxian conception of a
"scientifically based" socialist movement and said that such a
movement's goals must be determined in accordance with "knowledge
capable of objective proof, that is, knowledge which refers to, and
conforms with, nothing but empirical knowledge and logic". As such,
Bernstein was strongly opposed to dogmatism within the Marxist
movement. Despite embracing a mixed economy, Bernstein was
skeptical and critical of welfare state policies, believing them to be
helpful, but ultimately secondary to the main social democratic goal
of replacing capitalism with socialism, fearing that state aid to the
unemployed might lead to the sanctioning of a new form of
Representing revolutionary socialism,
Rosa Luxemburg staunchly
condemned Bernstein's revisionism and reformism for being based on
"opportunism in social democracy". She likened Bernstein's policies to
that of the dispute between Marxists and the opportunistic Praktiker
("Pragmatists"). She denounced Bernstein's evolutionary socialism for
being a "petty-bourgeois vulgarization of Marxism". She claimed that
Bernstein's years of exile in Britain had made him lose familiarity
with the situation in Germany where he was promoting evolutionary
socialism. Luxemburg sought to maintain social democracy as a
revolutionary Marxist creed, saying:
[T]here could be no socialism—at least in Germany—outside of
Marxist socialism, and there could be no socialist class struggle
outside of social democracy. From then on [the emergence of Marx's
theory], socialism and Marxism, the proletarian struggle for
emancipation, and social democracy were identical.
Both Kautsky and Luxemburg condemned Bernstein for his "flawed"
philosophy of science for having abandoned
Hegelian dialectics for
Kantian philosophical dualism. Russian Marxist
George Plekhanov joined
Kautsky and Luxemburg in condemning Bernstein for having a neo-Kantian
philosophy. Kautsky and Luxemburg contended that Bernstein's
empiricist viewpoints depersonalized and dehistoricized the social
observer and reducing objects down to "facts". Luxemburg associated
Bernstein with "ethical socialists" who she identified as being
associated with the bourgeoisie and Kantian liberalism.
In his introduction to the 1895 edition of Marx's The Class Struggles
in France, Engels attempted to resolve the division between gradualist
reformists and revolutionaries in the Marxist movement by declaring
that he was in favour of short-term tactics of electoral politics that
included gradualist and evolutionary socialist measures while
maintaining his belief that revolutionary seizure of power by the
proletariat should remain a goal. In spite of this attempt by Engels
to merge gradualism and revolution, his effort only diluted the
distinction of gradualism and revolution and had the effect of
strengthening the position of the revisionists. Engels' statements
in the French newspaper Le Figaro, in which he stated that
"revolution" and the "so-called socialist society" was not a fixed
concept, but was a constantly changing social phenomenon and said that
this made "us [socialists] all evolutionists", increased the public
perception that Engels was gravitating towards evolutionary
socialism. Engels also said that it would be "suicidal" to talk
about a revolutionary seizure of power at a time when the historical
circumstances favoured a parliamentary road to power that he predicted
could bring "social democracy into power as early as 1898".
Engels' stance of openly accepting gradualist, evolutionary and
parliamentary tactics while claiming that the historical circumstances
did not favour revolution caused confusion. Bernstein interpreted
this as indicating that Engels was moving towards accepting
parliamentary reformist and gradualist stances, but he ignored that
Engels' stances were tactical as a response to the particular
circumstances and that Engels was still committed to revolutionary
In 1897, after Bernstein delivered a lecture in Britain to the Fabian
Society titled "On What Marx Really Taught", Bernstein wrote a letter
to the orthodox Marxist Bebel in which he revealed that he felt
conflicted with what he had said at the lecture as well as revealing
his intentions regarding revision of Marxism:
[A]s I was reading the lecture, the thought shot through my head that
I was doing Marx an injustice, that it was not Marx I was
presenting...I told myself secretly that this could not go on. It is
idle to reconcile the irreconcilable. The vital thing is to be clear
as to where Marx is still right and where he is not.
What Bernstein meant was that he believed that Marx was wrong in
assuming that the capitalist economy would collapse as a result of its
internal contradictions, as by the mid-1890s there was little evidence
of such internal contradictions causing this to capitalism.
The dispute over policies in favour of reform or revolution dominated
discussions at the 1899 Hanover Party Conference of the Socialist
Workers' Party of Germany (SAPD). This issue had become especially
prominent with the Millerand Affair in France in which Alexandre
Millerand of the Independent Socialists joined the non-socialist
government of France's liberal Prime Minister Waldeck-Rousseau without
seeking support from his party's leadership. Millerand's actions
provoked outrage amongst revolutionary socialists within the Second
International, including the anarchist left and Jules Guesde's
revolutionary Marxists. In response to these disputes over reform
or revolution, the 1900 Paris Congress of the Second International
declared a resolution to the dispute, in which Guesde's demands were
partially accepted in a resolution drafted by Kautsky that declared
that overall socialists should not take part in a non-socialist
government, but provided exceptions to this rule where necessary to
provide the "protection of the achievements of the working class".
Another prominent figure who influenced social democracy was French
revisionist Marxist and reformist socialist Jean Jaurès. During the
1904 Congress of the Second International, Jaurès challenged orthodox
Marxist August Bebel, the mentor of Kautsky, over his promotion of
monolithic socialist tactics. Jaurès claimed that no coherent
socialist platform could be equally applicable to different countries
and regions due to different political systems in them; noting that
Bebel's homeland of Germany at the time was very authoritarian and had
limited parliamentary democracy. He compared the limited political
influence of socialism in government in Germany to the substantial
influence that socialism had gained in France due to its stronger
parliamentary democracy. He claimed that the example of the political
differences between Germany and France demonstrated that monolithic
socialist tactics were impossible, given the political differences of
World Wars, revolutions, counterrevolutions and Great Depression
As tensions between Europe's
Great Powers escalated in the late 19th
and early 20th centuries, Bernstein feared that Germany's arms race
with other powers was threatening the possibility of a major war.
Bernstein's fears were realised with the outbreak of World War I.
Ramsay MacDonald, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (1929–1935),
Immediately after the outbreak of World War I, Bernstein travelled
from Germany to Britain to meet with British Labour Party leader
Ramsay MacDonald. Bernstein regarded the outbreak of the war with
great dismay, but even though the two countries were at war with one
another he honoured Bernstein at the meeting. In spite of
Bernstein's and other social democrats' attempts to secure the unity
of the Second International, with national tensions increasing between
the countries at war, the
Second International collapsed in 1914.
Anti-war members of the SPD refused to support finances being given to
the German government to support the war. However, a
nationalist-revisionist faction of SPD members led by Friedrich Ebert,
Gustav Noske and
Philipp Scheidemann supported the war, arguing that
Germany had the "right to its territorial defense" from the
"destruction of Tsarist despotism". The SPD's decision to support
the war, including Bernstein's decision to support it, was heavily
influenced by the fact that the German government lied to the German
people, as it claimed that the only reason Germany had declared war on
Russia was because Russia was preparing to invade East Prussia, when
in fact this was not the case. Jaurès opposed France's
intervention in the war and took a pacifist stance, but was soon
assassinated in 1914.
Bernstein soon resented the war and by October 1914 was convinced of
the German government's war guilt and contacted the orthodox Marxists
of the SPD to unite to push the SPD to take an anti-war stance.
Kautsky attempted to put aside his differences with Bernstein and join
forces in opposing the war and Kautsky praised him for becoming a firm
anti-war proponent, saying that although Bernstein had previously
supported "civic" and "liberal" forms of nationalism, his committed
anti-war position made him the "standard-bearer of the
internationalist idea of social democracy". The nationalist
position by the SPD leadership under Ebert refused to rescind.
In Britain, the British Labour Party became divided on the war. Labour
Ramsay MacDonald was one of a handful of British MPs who
had denounced Britain's declaration of war on Germany. MacDonald was
denounced by the pro-war press on accusations that he was "pro-German"
and a pacifist, both charges that he denied. In response to
pro-war sentiments in the Labour Party, MacDonald resigned from being
its leader and associated himself with the Independent Labour Party.
Arthur Henderson became the new leader of the Labour Party and served
as a cabinet minister in Prime Minister Asquith's war government.
February Revolution of 1917 in Russia (not to be confused
with the October Revolution) in which the Tsarist regime in Russia was
overthrown, MacDonald visited the
Russian Provisional Government
Russian Provisional Government in
June 1917, seeking to persuade Russia to oppose the war and seek
peace. His efforts to unite the
Russian Provisional Government
Russian Provisional Government against
the war failed after Russia fell back into political violence
resulting in the
October Revolution in which the Bolsheviks led
Vladimir Lenin's rise to power. Though MacDonald critically
responded to the Bolsheviks' political violence and rise to power by
warning of "the danger of anarchy in Russia", he gave political
support to the
Bolshevik regime until the end of the war because he
then thought that a democratic internationalism could be revived.
The British Labour Party's trade union affiliated membership soared
during World War I. With the assistance of Sidney Webb, Henderson
designed a new constitution for the British Labour Party, in which it
adopted a strongly left-wing platform in 1918 to ensure that it would
not lose support to the new Communist Party, exemplified by Clause IV
of the constitution.
President of Germany
President of Germany (1919–1925)
The overthrow of the Tsarist regime in Russia in February 1917
impacted politics in Germany, as it ended the legitimation used by
Ebert and other pro-war SPD members that Germany was in the war
against a reactionary Russian government. With the overthrow of the
Tsar and revolutionary socialist agitation increased in Russia, such
events influenced socialists in Germany. With rising bread shortages
in Germany amid war rationing, mass strikes occurred beginning in
April 1917 with 300,000 strikers taking part in a strike in Berlin.
The strikers demanded bread, freedom, peace and the formation of
workers' councils as was being done in Russia. Amidst the German
public's uproar, the SPD alongside the Progressives and the Catholic
labour movement in the Reichstag put forward the "Peace Resolution" on
19 July 1917 that called for a compromise peace to end the war, which
was passed by a majority of members of the Reichstag. The German High
Command opposed the Peace Resolution, but it did seek to end the war
with Russia and presented the
Treaty of Brest-Litovsk
Treaty of Brest-Litovsk to the Bolshevik
regime in 1918 that agreed to the terms and the Reichstag passed the
treaty, which included the support of the SPD, the Progressives and
the Catholic political movement.
By late 1918, the war situation for Germany had become hopeless and
Kaiser Wilhelm II
Kaiser Wilhelm II was pressured to make peace. Wilhelm II appointed a
new cabinet that included SPD members. At the same time, the Imperial
Naval Command was determined to make a heroic last stand against the
Royal Navy and on 24 October 1918 it issued orders for the
German Navy to depart to confront while the sailors refused, resulting
in the Kiel Mutiny. The
Kiel Mutiny resulted in the German Revolution
of 1918–1919. Faced with military failure and revolution the
Prince Maximilian of Baden
Prince Maximilian of Baden resigned, giving SPD leader
Ebert the position of Chancellor, Wihelm II abdicated the German
throne immediately afterwards and the German High Command officials
Paul von Hindenburg
Paul von Hindenburg and
Erich Ludendorff resigned whilst refusing to
end the war to save face, leaving the Ebert government and the
SPD-majority Reichstag to be forced to make the inevitable peace with
the Allies and take the blame for having lost the war. With the
abdication of Wilhelm II, Ebert declared Germany to be a republic and
signed the armistice that ended
World War I
World War I on 11 November 1918.
The new social democratic government in Germany faced political
violence in Berlin by a movement of communist revolutionaries known as
Spartacist League who sought to repeat the feat of Lenin and the
Bolsheviks in Russia by overthrowing the German government.
Tensions between the governing "Majority" Social Democrats (led by
Ebert) versus the strongly left-wing elements of the Independent
Social Democratic Party
Social Democratic Party (USPD) and communists over Ebert's refusal to
immediately reform the German Army, resulted in the "January rising"
by the newly formed
Communist Party of Germany
Communist Party of Germany (KPD) and the USPD,
resulting in communists mobilizing a large workers' demonstration. The
SPD responded by holding a counter-demonstration that was effective in
demonstrating support for the government, and the USPD soon withdrew
its support for the rising. However, the communists continued to
revolt and between 12 to 28 January 1919 communist forces had seized
control of several government buildings in Berlin. Ebert responded by
requesting that Defense Minister
Gustav Noske take charge of loyal
soldiers to fight the communists and secure the government. Ebert
was furious with the communists' intransigence and said that he wished
"to teach the radicals a lesson they would never forget". Noske was
able to rally groups of mostly reactionary ex soldiers, known as the
Freikorps, who were eager to fight the communists. The situation soon
went completely out of control when the recruited
Freikorps went on a
violent rampage against workers and murdered the communist leaders
Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg. The atrocities by the
Freikorps against the communist revolutionaries
badly tarnished the reputation of the SPD and strengthened the
confidence of reactionary forces. In spite of this, the SPD was able
to win the largest number of seats in the parliamentary election held
on 19 January 1919 and Ebert was elected President of Germany, but the
USPD in response to the atrocities committed by the
government-recruited Freikorps, refused to support the SPD
Due to the unrest in Berlin, the drafting of the constitution of the
new German republic was undertaken in the city of
Weimar and the
following political era is referred to as the
Weimar Republic. Upon
founding the new government, President Ebert cooperated with liberal
members of his coalition government to create the constitution and
sought to begin a program of nationalization of some parts of the
economy. Political unrest and violence continued and the government's
continued reliance on the help of the
to fight the communist revolutionaries continued to alienate potential
left-wing support for the SPD. The SPD coalition government's
acceptance of the harsh peace conditions of the Treaty of Versailles
in June 1919, infuriated the right, including the
Freikorps that had
previously been willing to cooperate with the government to fight the
communists. In the German parliamentary election of June 1919, the SPD
share of the vote declined significantly. In March 1920, a group of
right-wing militarists led by
Wolfgang Kapp and former German military
Erich Ludendorff initiated a briefly successful putsch
against the German government in what became known as the Kapp Putsch,
but the putsch ultimately failed and the government was restored.
Noe Zhordania (man with white beard and wearing a white hat on the
left side of the car), the President of newly independent Georgia,
attending a meeting of the refounded
Second International in Georgia,
At a global level, after
World War I
World War I several attempts were made to
Second International that collapsed amidst national
divisions in the war. The
Vienna International formed in 1921
attempted to end the rift between reformist socialists, including
social democrats; and revolutionary socialists, including communists,
particularly the Mensheviks. However, a crisis soon erupted that
involved the new country of Georgia led by a social democratic
government led by President
Noe Zhordania that had declared itself
independent from Russia in 1918 whose government had been endorsed by
multiple social democratic parties. At founding meeting of the Vienna
International, the discussions were interrupted by the arrival of a
telegram from Zhordania who said that Georgia was being invaded by
Bolshevik Russia. Delegates attending the International's founding
meeting were stunned, particularly the
Bolshevik representative from
Russia, Mecheslav Bronsky, who refused to believe this and left the
meeting to seek confirmation of this, but upon confirmation Bronsky
did not return to the meeting. The overall response from the
Vienna International was divided, the
Mensheviks demanded that the
International immediately condemn Russia's aggression against Georgia,
but the majority as represented by German delegate Alfred Henke sought
to exercise caution and said that the delegates should wait for
confirmation. Russia's invasion of Georgia completely violated the
non-aggression treaty signed between Lenin and Zhordania, as well as
violating Georgia's sovereignty by annexing Georgia directly into the
Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic. Tensions between
Bolsheviks and social democrats worsened with the Kronstadt
rebellion. This was caused by unrest among leftists against the
Bolshevik government in Russia: Russian social democrats distributed
leaflets calling for a general strike against the
Bolshevik regime and
the Bolsheviks responded by forcefully repressing the rebels.
Relations between the social democratic movement and
descended into complete antagonism in response to the Russian famine
of 1921 and the Bolsheviks' violent repression of opposition to their
government. Multiple social democratic parties were disgusted with
Bolshevik regime, particularly Germany's SPD and the
Netherlands' Social Democratic Workers' Party (SDAP) that denounced
the Bolsheviks for defiling socialism and declared that the Bolsheviks
had "driven out the best of our comrades, thrown them into prison and
put them to death".
In May 1923, social democrats united to found their own international,
the Labour and
Socialist International (LSI), founded in Hamburg,
Germany. The LSI declared that all its affiliated political parties
would retain autonomy to make their own decisions regarding internal
affairs of their countries, but that international affairs would be
addressed by the LSI. The LSI addressed the issue of the rise of
fascism by declaring the LSI to be anti-fascist. In response to
the outbreak of the
Spanish Civil War
Spanish Civil War in 1936 between the
democratically elected Republican government versus the authoritarian
right-wing Nationalists led by
Francisco Franco with the support of
Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany, the Executive Committee of the LSI
declared not only its support for the Spanish Republic but also that
it supported the Spanish government having the right to purchase arms
to fight Franco's Nationalist forces. LSI-affiliated parties,
including the British Labour Party, declared their support for the
Spanish Republic. However, the LSI was criticised on the left for
failing to put its anti-fascist rhetoric into action.
Hjalmar Branting, Prime Minister of Sweden (1921–1923, 1924–1925),
The stock market crash of 1929 that began an economic crisis in the
United States that globally spread and became the Great Depression
profoundly affected economic policy-making. The collapse of the
gold standard and the emergence of mass unemployment resulted in
multiple governments recognising the need for state macroeconomic
intervention to reduce unemployment as well as economic intervention
to stabilise prices, a proto-
Keynesianism that John Maynard Keynes
himself would soon publicly endorse. Multiple social democratic
parties declared the need for substantial investment in economic
infrastructure projects to respond to unemployment, and creating
social control over money flow. Furthermore, social democratic parties
declared that the
Great Depression demonstrated the need for
substantial macroeconomic planning while their pro-property rights
opponents staunchly opposed this. However, attempts by social
democratic governments to achieve this were unsuccessful due to the
ensuing political instability in their countries from the depression,
the British Labour Party became internally split over the policies
while Germany's SPD government did not have the time to implement such
policies as Germany's politics turned to violent civil unrest in which
the Nazis rose to power in 1933 and dismantled parliamentary
A major development for social democracy was the victories of several
social democratic parties in Scandinavia, particularly the Swedish
Social Democratic Party
Social Democratic Party (SAP) in the 1920 Swedish election. The
SAP was elected to a minority government. It created a Socialisation
Committee that declared support for a mixed economy that combined the
best of private initiative with social ownership or control,
supporting a substantial socialisation "of all necessary natural
resources, industrial enterprises, credit institutions, transportation
and communication routes" that would be gradually transferred to the
state. It permitted private ownership outside of these areas.
Mohandas Gandhi, here meeting with women textile workers in Britain,
was a leadership figure of India's anti-colonial and social democratic
Indian National Congress
Ramsay MacDonald returned to the leadership of the Labour
Party from the Independent Labour Party. In the 1924 British election,
the Labour Party won a plurality of seats and was elected as a
minority government, but required assistance from the Liberal Party to
achieve a majority in parliament. Opponents of the Labour Party
accused the party of communist sympathies. Prime Minister MacDonald
responded to these allegations by stressing the party's commitment to
reformist gradualism and openly opposing the radical wing in the
party. MacDonald emphasized that the Labour minority government's
first and foremost commitment was to uphold democratic responsible
government over all other policies. MacDonald emphasized this because
he knew that any attempt to pass major socialist legislation in a
minority government status would endanger the new government, because
it would be opposed and blocked by the Conservatives and the Liberals
who together held a majority of seats. The Labour Party had risen to
power in the aftermath of Britain's severe recession of 1921–1922:
with the economy beginning to recover, British trade unions demanded
that their wages be restored from the cuts they took in the recession.
The trade unions soon became deeply dissatisfied with the MacDonald
government and labour unrest and threat of strikes arose in
transportation sector, including docks and railways. MacDonald viewed
the situation as a crisis, consulting the unions in advance to warn
them that his government would have to use strikebreakers if the
situation continued. The anticipated clash between the government and
the unions was averted, but the situation alienated the unions from
the MacDonald government. MacDonald's most controversial action was
having Britain recognize the government of the Soviet Union in
February 1924. The British Conservative press, including the Daily
Mail, used this to promote a red scare by claiming that the Labour
government's recognition of the Soviet Union proved that Labour held
The Labour Party lost the 1924 election and a Conservative government
was elected. Though MacDonald faced multiple challenges to his
leadership of the party, the party stabilized by 1927 as a capable
opposition to the Conservative government. MacDonald released a new
political programme for the party titled Labour and the Nation (1928).
The Labour Party returned to government in 1929, but soon faced the
economic catastrophe of the stock market crash of 1929.
SPD policymaker Rudolf Hilferding, a major figure in the Sopade
In the 1920s, SPD policymaker and Marxist
Rudolf Hilferding proposed
substantial policy changes in the SPD as well as influencing social
democratic and socialist theory. Hilferding was an influential Marxian
socialist both inside the social democratic movement and outside it,
such as his pamphlet titled Imperialism which influenced Lenin's own
conception of imperialism in the 1910s. Prior to the 1920s Hilferding
declared that capitalism had evolved beyond what had been
laissez-faire capitalism into what he called "organized capitalism".
Organized capitalism was based upon trusts and cartels controlled by
financial institutions that could no longer make money within their
countries' national boundaries and thus needed to export to survive,
resulting in support for imperialism. Hilferding described that
while early capitalism promoted itself as peaceful and based on free
trade, the era of organized capitalism was aggressive and said that
"in the place of humanity there came the idea of the strength and
power of the state". He said that this had the consequence of creating
effective collectivization within capitalism and had prepared the way
Originally, Hilferding's vision of a socialism replacing organized
capitalism was highly Kautskyan in assuming an either/or perspective
and expecting a catastrophic clash between organized capitalism versus
socialism. However, by the 1920s Hilferding became an adherent to
promoting a gradualist evolution of capitalism into socialism. He then
praised organized capitalism for being a step towards socialism,
saying at the SPD congress in 1927 that "organized capitalism" is
nothing less than "the replacement of the capitalist principle of free
competition by the socialist principle of planned production". He went
on to say that "the problem is posed to our generation: with the help
of the state, with the help of conscious social direction, to
transform the economy organized and led by capitalists into an economy
directed by the democratic state".
Alva Myrdal, a prominent figure in the Swedish Social Democratic Party
in the 1930s and a pioneer in the development of the social welfare
state in Sweden
In the 1930s, the SPD began to transition away from revisionist
Marxism towards liberal socialism beginning in the 1930s. After the
party was banned by the Nazis in 1933, the SPD acted in exile through
Sopade. In 1934, the
Sopade began to publish material that
indicated that the SPD was turning towards liberal socialism. Curt
Geyer, who was a prominent proponent of liberal socialism within the
Sopade, declared that
Sopade represented the tradition of Weimar
Republic social democracy, liberal democratic socialism and stated
Sopade had held true to its mandate of traditional liberal
principles combined with the political realism of socialism.
The only social democratic governments in Europe that remained by the
early 1930s were in Scandinavia. In the 1930s, several Swedish
social democratic leadership figures, including former Swedish Prime
Minister Rickard Sandler—the secretary and chairman of the
Socialization Committee—and Nils Karleby, rejected earlier SAP
socialization policies pursued in the 1920s for being too extreme.
Karleby and Sandler developed a new conception of social democracy,
the Nordic model, which called for gradual socialization and
redistribution of purchasing power, provision of educational
opportunity and support of property rights. The
Nordic model would
permit private enterprise on the condition that it adheres to the
principle that the resources it disposes are in reality public means
and would create of a broad category of social welfare rights.
The new SAP government of 1932 replaced the previous government's
universal commitment to a balanced budget with a Keynesian-like
commitment, which in turn was replaced with a balanced budget within a
business cycle. Whereas the 1921–1923 SAP governments had run large
deficits, after a strong increase in state expenditure in 1933 the new
SAP government reduced Sweden's budget deficit. The government had
planned to eliminate Sweden's budget deficit in seven years, but it
took only three years to eliminate the deficit and Sweden had a budget
surplus from 1936 to 1938. However, this policy was criticized
because—although the budget deficit had been eliminated—major
unemployment still remained a problem in Sweden.
Lázaro Cárdenas, President of
Americas from the 1920s to 1930s, social democracy was rising
as a major political force. In Mexico, several social democratic
governments and presidents were elected from the 1920s to the 1930s.
The most important Mexican social democratic government of this time
was that led by President
Lázaro Cárdenas and the Party of the
Mexican Revolution whose government initiated agrarian reform that
broke up vast aristocratic estates and redistributed property to
peasants. Cárdenas was deeply committed to social democracy, but was
criticized by his left-wing opponents for being pro-capitalist due to
his personal association with a wealthy family and for being corrupt
due to his government's exemption from agrarian reform of the estate
held by former Mexican President Alvaro Obregón. Political violence
Mexico had become serious in the 1920s with the
Cristero War in
which right-wing reactionary clericals fought against the left-wing
government that was attempting to institute secularization of Mexico.
Furthermore, Cardenas' government openly supported Spain's Republican
government while opposing Francisco Franco's Nationalists during the
Spanish Civil War. During the Spanish Civil War, Cárdenas staunchly
Mexico was progressive and socialist, working with
socialists of various types—including communists—and accepting
refugees from Spain, as well as accepting communist dissident Leon
Trotsky as a refugee after
Joseph Stalin expelled Trotsky and sought
to have him killed. Cárdenas strengthened the rights of Mexico's
labour movement, nationalized foreign oil companies and
controversially supported peasants in their struggle against landlords
by allowing them to form militias to fight the private armies of
landlords in the country. Cárdenas' actions deeply aggravated
right-wing reactionaries and there was fear that
Mexico would succumb
to civil war. Cardenas stepped down as Mexican President and supported
a compromise presidential candidate who held support from business
interests in order to avoid further antagonizing the right-wing.
Cold War era and
See also: History of socialism
Michael Joseph Savage, Prime Minister of New Zealand (1935–1940) and
architect of New Zealand's Social Security Act 1938
After World War II, a new international organization to represent
social democracy and democratic socialism, the Socialist International
in 1951. In the founding Frankfurt Declaration, the Socialist
International denounced both capitalism and Bolshevik
communism—criticizing the latter in articles 7, 8, 9 and
Socialism advances throughout the world, new forces have
arisen to threaten the movement towards freedom and social justice.
Bolshevik Revolution in Russia,
Communism has split the
International Labour Movement and has set back the realisation of
Socialism in many countries for decades.
Communism falsely claims a share in the Socialist tradition. In fact
it has distorted that tradition beyond recognition. It has built up a
rigid theology which is incompatible with the critical spirit of
Where Socialists aim to achieve freedom and justice by removing the
exploitation which divides men under capitalism, Communists seek to
sharpen those class divisions only in order to establish the
dictatorship of a single party.
Communism is the instrument of a new imperialism.
Wherever it has achieved power it has destroyed freedom or the chance
of gaining freedom. It is based on a militarist bureaucracy and a
terrorist police. By producing glaring contrasts of wealth and
privilege it has created a new class society. Forced labour plays an
important part in its economic organisation.
The rise of
Keynesianism in the
Western world during the Cold War
influenced the development of social democracy. The attitude of
social democrats towards capitalism changed as a result of the rise of
Capitalism was acceptable to social democrats only
if capitalism's typical crises could be prevented and if mass
unemployment could be averted:
Keynesianism was believed to be able to
provide this. Social democrats came to accept the market for
reasons of efficiency and endorsed
Keynesianism as that was expected
to reconcile democracy and capitalism.
Lord Attlee, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (1945–1951)
After the 1945 British election, a Labour government was formed by
Clement Attlee (later known as Earl Attlee). Attlee immediately began
a program of major nationalizations of the economy. From 1945 to
1951, the Labour government nationalized the Bank of England, civil
aviation, cable and wireless, coal, transport, electricity, gas and
iron and steel. This policy of major nationalizations gained
support from the left faction within the Labour Party that saw the
nationalizations as achieving the transformation of Britain from a
capitalist to socialist economy. However, the Labour government's
nationalizations were staunchly condemned by the opposition
Conservative Party. The Conservatives defended private enterprise
and accused the Labour government of intending to create a
Soviet-style centrally planned socialist state. However,
accusation by the Conservatives of the nationalizations being inspired
by Soviet-style central planning was not the case, as the Labour
government's three Chancellors of the Exchequer, Hugh Dalton, Stafford
Cripps and Hugh Gaitskell, all opposed Soviet-style central
planning. Initially there were strong direct controls by the
state in the economy that had already been implemented by the British
government during World War II, but after the war these controls
gradually loosened under the Labour government and were eventually
phased out and replaced by Keynesian demand management. In spite
of opposition by the Conservatives to the nationalizations, all of the
nationalizations except for the nationalization of coal and iron soon
became accepted in a national consensus on the economy that lasted
until the Thatcher era when the national consensus turned towards
support of privatization. The Labour Party lost the 1951 election
and a Conservative government was formed.
There were early major critics of the nationalization policy within
the Labour Party in the 1950s. In The Future of
British social democratic theorist
Anthony Crosland argued that
socialism should be about the reforming of capitalism from
within. Crosland claimed that the traditional socialist programme
of abolishing capitalism on the basis of capitalism inherently causing
immiseration had been rendered obsolete by the fact that the post-war
Keynesian capitalism had led to the expansion of affluence for all,
including full employment and a welfare state. Crosland claimed
that the rise of such an affluent society had resulted in class
identity fading and as a consequence socialism in its traditional
conception as then supported by the British Labour Party was no longer
attracting support. He claimed that the Labour Party was
associated in the public's mind as having "a sectional, traditional,
class appeal" that was reinforced by bickering over
nationalization. Crosland argued that in order for the Labour
Party to become electable again it had to drop its commitment to
nationalization and to stop equating nationalization with
socialism. Instead of this, he claimed that a socialist programme
should be about support of social welfare, redistribution of wealth
and "the proper dividing line between the public and private spheres
The SPD in
West Germany in 1945 endorsed a similar policy on
nationalizations to that of the British Labour government. SPD leader
Kurt Schumacher declared that the SPD was in favour of
nationalizations of key industrial sectors of the economy, such as
banking and credit, insurance, mining, coal, iron, steel,
metal-working and all other sectors that were identified as
monopolistic or cartelized.
David Ben-Gurion, the first
Prime Minister of Israel
Prime Minister of Israel (1948–1954,
Prime Minister of India
Prime Minister of India (1947–1964)
Upon becoming a sovereign state in 1947, India elected the social
Indian National Congress
Indian National Congress to government with its leader
Jawaharlal Nehru becoming Indian Prime Minister. Nehru declared: "In
Europe, we see many countries have advanced very far on the road to
socialism. I am not referring to the communist countries but to those
which may be called parliamentary, social democratic countries".
In power, Nehru's government emphasized state-guided national
development of India and took inspiration from social democracy,
though India's newly formed Planning Commission also took inspiration
from post-1949 China's agricultural policies.
The new sovereign state of
Israel elected the socialist
that sought the creation of a socialist economy based on cooperative
ownership of the means of production via the kibbutz system while it
rejected nationalization of the means of production. The kibbutz
are producer cooperatives that with government assistance have
flourished in Israel.
In 1959, the SPD instituted a major policy review with the Godesberg
Godesberg Program eliminated the party's remaining
Marxist-aligned policies and the SPD became based upon freiheitlicher
Sozialismus (liberal socialism). With the adoption of the
Godsberg Program, the SPD renounced Marxist determinism and classism
and replaced it with an ethical socialism based on humanism and
emphasized that the party was democratic, pragmatic and
reformist. The most controversial decision of the Godesberg
Program was its declaration saying: "Private ownership of the means of
production can claim protection by society as long as it does not
hinder the establishment of social justice". This policy meant
the endorsement of Keynesian economic management, social welfare and a
degree of economic planning, as well as an abandonment of the
classical conception of socialism as involving the replacement of
capitalist economic system. It declared that the SPD "no longer
considered nationalization the major principle of a socialist economy
but only one of several (and then only the last) means of controlling
economic concentration of power of key industries", while also
committing the SPD to an economic stance to promote "as much
competition as possible, as much planning as necessary". This
decision to abandon this traditional policy angered many in the SPD
who had supported it.
Willy Brandt, Chancellor of
West Germany (1969–1974)
With these changes, the SPD enacted the two major pillars of what
would become the modern social democratic program: making the party a
people's party rather than a party solely representing the working
class and abandoning remaining Marxist policies aimed at destroying
capitalism and replacing them with policies aimed at reforming
Godesberg Program divorced its conception of
socialism from Marxism, declaring that democratic socialism in Europe
was "rooted in Christian ethics, humanism, and classical
Godesberg Program has been seen as involving the
final prevailing of the reformist agenda of Bernstein over the
orthodox Marxist agenda of Kautsky.
Godesberg Program was a major revision of the SPD's policies and
gained attention from beyond Germany. At the time of its
adoption, in neighbouring France the stance of the French Section of
the Workers' International (SFIO) was divided on the Godesberg Program
while the Autonomous
Socialist Party (PSA) denounced the Godesberg
Program as "a renunciation of Socialism" and opportunistic reaction to
the SPD's electoral defeats.
Response to neoliberalism (1979–1990s)
The economic crisis in the
Western world during the mid to late 1970s
resulted in the rise of neoliberalism and politicians elected on
neoliberal platforms such as British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
and U.S. President Ronald Reagan. The rise in support for
neoliberalism raised questions over the political viability of social
democracy, such as sociologist
Ralf Dahrendorf predicting the "end of
the social democratic century".
Prime Minister of India
Prime Minister of India (1966–1977, 1980–1984)
In 1985, an agreement was made between several social democratic
parties in the Western bloc countries of Belgium, Denmark and the
Netherlands; and with the communist parties of the Eastern Bloc
countries of Bulgaria,
East Germany and Hungary; to have multilateral
discussions on trade, nuclear disarmament and other issues.
In 1989, the
Socialist International adopted its present Declaration
of Principles. The Declaration of Principles addressed issues
concerning the "internationalization of the economy". The Declaration
of Principles defined its interpretation of the nature of socialism.
It stated that socialist values and vision include "a peaceful and
democratic world society combining freedom, justice and solidarity".
It defined the rights and freedoms it supported, stating: "Socialists
protect the inalienable right to life and to physical safety, to
freedom of belief and free expression of opinion, to freedom of
association and to protection from torture and degradation. Socialists
are committed to achieve freedom from hunger and want, genuine social
security, and the right to work". However, it also clarified that it
did not promote any fixed and permanent definition for socialism,
stating: "Socialists do not claim to possess the blueprint for some
final and fixed society which cannot be changed, reformed or further
developed. In a movement committed to democratic self-determination
there will always be room for creativity since each people and every
generation must set its own goals".
Socialist International congress was politically significant
in that members of
Communist Party of the Soviet Union
Communist Party of the Soviet Union during the
reformist leadership of
Mikhail Gorbachev attended the congress. The
Socialist International's new Declaration of Principles abandoned
previous statements made in the
Frankfurt Declaration of 1951 against
Soviet-style communism. After the congress, the Soviet state newspaper
Pravda noted that thanks to dialogue between the Soviet Communist
Party and the SI since 1979 that "the positions of the CPSU and the
Socialist International on nuclear disarmament issues today virtually
Prime Minister of Israel
Prime Minister of Israel and Leader of the Israeli
Labor Party, shaking hands with Yasser Arafat, Chairman of the
Palestinian Liberation Organization and founder of Fatah, in front of
Bill Clinton after having signed the
Oslo Accords in
The collapse of the Marxist–Leninist regimes in Eastern Europe after
the end of the
Cold War and the creation of multiparty democracy in
many many of those countries resulted in the creation of multiple
social democratic parties. Though many of these parties did not
achieve initial electoral success, they became a significant part of
the political landscape of Eastern Europe. In Western Europe, the
Italian Communist Party
Italian Communist Party transformed itself into the
Democratic Party of the Left
Democratic Party of the Left in 1991.
Third Way (1990s–2010s)
In the 1990s,
Third Way politics developed and many social democrats
became adherents of it. The social democratic variant of the Third Way
has been advocated by its proponents as an alternative to both
capitalism and what it regards as the traditional forms of
socialism—including Marxist socialism and state socialism—which
Third Way social democrats reject. It officially advocates ethical
socialism, reformism and gradualism, which includes advocating a
humanized version of capitalism, a mixed economy, political pluralism
and liberal democracy. Left-wing opponents of
Third Way social
democracy claim that it is not a form of socialism and claim that it
represents social democrats who responded to the
New Right by
accepting capitalism. The
Third Way has been strongly criticized
within the social democratic movement. Supporters of Third Way
ideals argue that they merely represent a necessary or pragmatic
adaptation of social democracy to the realities of the modern world,
noting that traditional social democracy thrived during the prevailing
international climate of the post-war Bretton Woods consensus, which
collapsed in the 1970s.
When he was a British Labour Party MP,
Third Way supporter and former
British Prime Minister
Tony Blair wrote in a Fabian pamphlet in 1994
about the existence of two prominent variants of socialism: one is
based on a Marxist economic determinist and collectivist tradition
that he rejected and the other is an "ethical socialism" that he
supported which was based on values of "social justice, the equal
worth of each citizen, equality of opportunity, community".
Lord Giddens, a prominent proponent of
Third Way politics
Third Way proponent Anthony Giddens, Baron Giddens views
conventional socialism as essentially having become obsolete. However,
Giddens claims that a viable form of socialism was advocated by
Anthony Crosland in his major work The Future of Socialism
(1956). He has complimented Crosland as well as Thomas Humphrey
Marshall for promoting a viable socialism. Giddens views what he
considers the conventional form of socialism that defines socialism as
a theory of economic management—state socialism—as no longer
viable. He rejects what he considers top-down socialism as well
as rejecting neoliberalism and criticizes conventional socialism
for its common advocacy that socialization of production as achieved
by central planning can overcome the irrationalities of capitalism.
Giddens claims that this claim "can no longer be defended". He says
that with the collapse of legitimacy of centrally planned
socialization of production, "[w]ith its dissolution, the radical
hopes for by socialism are as dead as the Old Conservatism that
opposed them". Giddens says that although there have been proponents
of market socialism who have rejected such central planned socialism
as well as being resistant to capitalism, "[t]here are good reasons,
in my view, to argue that market socialism isn't a realistic
possibility". Giddens makes clear that the Third Way, as he envisions
it, is not market socialist, arguing that "[t]here is no
Third Way of
this sort, and with this realization the history of socialism as the
avant-garde of political theory comes to a close". Giddens
Third Way is connected to the legacy of reformist
revisionist socialism, saying: "Third way politics stands in the
traditions of social democratic revisionism that stretch back to
Eduard Bernstein and Karl Kautsky".
Romano Prodi, two-time Prime Minister of Italy, former President of
the European Commission and founding father of the Democratic Party
Giddens commends Crosland's A Future of
Socialism for recognizing that
socialism cannot be defined merely in terms of a rejection of
capitalism because if capitalism did end and was replaced with
socialism, then socialism would have no purpose with the absence of
capitalism. From Crosland's analysis, Giddens proposes a
description of socialism:
The only common characteristic of socialist doctrines is their ethical
Socialism is the pursuit of ideas of social cooperation,
universal welfare, and equality—ideas brought together by a
condemnation of the evils and injustices of capitalism. It is based on
the critique of individualism and depends on a 'belief in group action
and "participation", and collective responsibility for social
Paul Cammack has condemned the
Third Way as conceived by Lord Giddens
as being a complete attack upon the foundations of social democracy
and socialism, in which Giddens has sought to replace them with
capitalism. Cammack claims that Giddens devotes a lot of energy into
criticizing conventional social democracy and conventional
socialism—such as Giddens' claim that conventional socialism has
"died" because Marx's vision of a new economy with wealth spread in an
equitable way is not possible—while at the same time making no
criticism of capitalism. As such, Cammack condemns Giddens and his
Third Way for being anti-social-democratic, anti-socialist and
pro-capitalist that Giddens disguises in rhetoric to make appealing
within social democracy.
British political theorist Robert Corfe who was in the past a social
democratic proponent of a new socialism free of class-based
prejudices, criticized both Marxist classists and
Third Way proponents
within the Labour Party. Corfe has denounced the
Third Way as
developed by Giddens for "intellectual emptiness and ideological
poverty". Corfe has despondently noted and agreed with former
long-term British Labour Party MP Alice Mahon's statement in which she
said "Labour is the party of bankers, not workers. The party has lost
its soul, and what has replace it is harsh, American style politics".
Corfe claims that the failure to develop a new socialism has resulted
in what he considers the "death of socialism" that left social
capitalism as only feasible alternative.
Oskar Lafontaine, co-founder of Germany's political party The Left,
had been chairman of the SPD, but resigned and quit the party out of
opposition to the SPD's adoption of
Third Way positions
Former SPD chairman
Oskar Lafontaine condemned then-SPD leader and
Gerhard Schröder for his
Third Way policies, saying
that the SPD under Schröder had adopted "a radical change of
direction towards a policy of neoliberalism". After resigning
from the SPD, Lafontaine co-founded The Left in 2007. The Left
was founded out of a merger of the Party of Democratic
Labour and Social Justice – The Electoral Alternative
Labour and Social Justice – The Electoral Alternative (WASG), a
breakaway faction from the SPD. The Left has been controversial
because as a direct successor to the PDS it is also a direct successor
of former East Germany's ruling Marxist–Leninist Socialist Unity
Party (SED) that transformed into the PDS after the end of the Cold
War. However, the PDS did not continue the SED's policies as the PDS
adopted policies to appeal to democratic socialists, greens, feminists
and pacifists. Lafontaine said in an interview that he supports
the type of social democracy pursued by Willy Brandt, but claims that
the creation of The Left was necessary because "formerly socialist and
social democratic parties" had effectively accepted
neoliberalism. The Left grew in strength and in the 2009 German
parliamentary election gained 11 percent of the vote while the SPD
gained 23 percent of the vote.
Lafontaine has noted that the founding of The Left in Germany has
resulted in emulation in other countries, with several Left parties
being founded in Greece, Portugal, Netherlands and Syria.
Lafontaine claims that a de facto British Left movement exists,
Green Party of England and Wales
Green Party of England and Wales MEP
Caroline Lucas as
holding similar values.
Jack Layton, former leader of the New Democratic Party in Canada from
2003–2011, led the party to become the second largest Canadian
political party for the first time in its history
Others have claimed that social democracy needs to move past the Third
Way, such as Olaf Cramme and
Patrick Diamond in their book After the
Third Way: The Future of Social
Democracy in Europe (2012).
Cramme and Diamond recognize that the
Third Way arose as an attempt to
break down the traditional dichotomy within social democracy between
state intervention and markets in the economy, but they contend that
the global financial crisis of the late 2000s requires that social
democracy must rethink its political economy. Cramme and Diamond note
that belief in economic planning amongst socialists was strong in the
early to mid-twentieth century, but declined with the rise of the
neoliberal right that both attacked economic planning and associated
the left with economic planning. They claim that this formed the
foundation of the "Right's moral trap" in which the neoliberal right
attacks on economic planning policies by the left, that provokes a
defense of such planning by the left as being morally necessary and
ends with the right then rebuking such policies as being inherently
economically incompetent while presenting itself as the champion of
economic competence. Cramme and Diamond state that social
democracy has five different strategies both to address the economic
crisis in global markets at present that it could adopt in response:
market conforming, market complimenting, market resisting, market
substituting and market transforming.
Cramme and Diamond identify market conforming as being equivalent to
British Labour Party politician and former Chancellor of the Exchequer
Philip Snowden's desire for a very moderate socialist agenda based
above all upon fiscal prudence, as Snowden insisted that socialism had
to build upon fiscal prudence or else it would not be achieved.
Western Europe (2010s–present)
In the 2010s, the social democratic parties that had dominated some of
World War II
World War II political landscape in
Western Europe were under
pressure in some countries to the extent that a commentator in Foreign
Affairs called it an "implosion of the centre-left". The first
country that saw this development was Greece in the aftermath of the
Great Recession and the ongoing Greek government-debt crisis. Support
for the Greek social democrat party
PASOK declined from 43.9% in the
Hellenic parliament election to 4.68% in the January 2015
election. The decline subsequently proved to not be isolated to Greece
as it spread to a number of countries in Western Europe, a phenomenon
many observers thus described as Pasokification:
The Netherlands: support for the Dutch labour party PvdA declined to
an all-time low of 5.7% in the 2017 Dutch general election.
Iceland: in the 2016 Icelandic parliamentary election, the Social
Democratic Alliance received 5.7% of votes, down from 29.8% in the
2013 election. This is their lowest support in any election since the
main predecessor of the alliance, the Social Democratic Party, first
ran for election in 1916.
France: in the first round of the 2017 French presidential election,
Socialist Party candidate
Benoît Hamon received 6.4% of the
votes, placing fifth, down from 28.6% in the 2012 when the party's
François Hollande was eventually elected president. In
November 2016, Hollande's approval rating was 4%.
Ireland: the Irish Labour Party received 6.6% of the vote in the 2016
Irish general election, their worst result since 1987 and down from
19.5% in the 2011 election.
Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party
Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party received 20.2% of
the vote in the 2013 Luxembourg general election, their lowest support
since the 1931 general election.
Social Democratic Party
Social Democratic Party of Germany received 20.5% of the
vote in the 2017 Bundestag election. This was the lowest support for
SPD in post-WWII history.
Spain: the 2015 Spanish general election resulted in the worst
electoral results for the social democratic party Spanish Socialist
Workers' Party since the re-establishment of democracy in 1977, at
22.0% of the vote.
Czech Republic: the Czech
Social Democratic Party
Social Democratic Party received 7.3% during
2017 legislative election, their worst result since 1992 and down from
20.5% in 2013.
However, in other countries such as Denmark and Portugal support for
social democratic parties was relatively strong in polls as of 2017.
Moreover, in some countries the decline of the social democratic
parties was accompanied by a surge in the support for other
centre-left or left-wing parties, such as
Syriza in Greece, Unidos
Podemos in Spain and the
Left-Green Movement in Iceland.
Several explanations for the European decline have been proposed. Some
commentators highlight that the Social Democrat support of national
fragmentation and labour market deregulation had become less popular
among potential voters. For instance, French political scientist
Pierre Manent emphasised the need for social democrats to rehabilitate
and reinvigorate the idea of nationhood. After the Norwegian
Labour Party's loss in the 2017 election, commentators such as the
Avisenes Nyhetsbyrå highlighted that the party had ignored
a strong surge in discontent with immigration among potential
A 2017 article in
The Political Quarterly explains the decline in
Germany with electoral disillusionment with
Third Way politics, or
more specifically Gerhard Schröder's embracement of the Hartz plan,
which recommended welfare state retrenchment and labour market
deregulation. The article claims that the SPD subsequently lost half
of its former electoral coalition, namely blue-collar voters and
socially disadvantaged groups, while efforts to gain access to
centrist and middle-class voters failed to produce any compensating
gains. Furthermore, the article concludes that the only possible
remedy is for the SPD to make efforts to regain former voters by
offering credible social welfare and redistributive policies. A
research article in
Socio-Economic Review found that the longer-term
electoral effects of the Hartz plan and
Agenda 2010 on relevant voter
groups were limited, but that it had helped to entrench The Left as a
permanent political force to the left of SPD.
The examples and perspective in this section may not include all
significant viewpoints. Please improve the article or discuss the
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From a purely socialist point of view, social democratic reform is a
failure since it serves to devise new means to strengthen the
capitalist system, which conflicts with the socialist goal of
replacing capitalism with a socialist system.
Socialist critics often criticize social democracy on the grounds that
it fails to address the systemic issues inherent to capitalism,
arguing that ameliorative social programs and interventionism generate
issues and contradictions of their own, thus limiting the efficiency
of the capitalist system. The American democratic socialist
David Schweickart contrasts social democracy with
democratic socialism by defining the former as an attempt to
strengthen the welfare state and the latter as an alternative economic
system to capitalism. According to Schweickart, the democratic
socialist critique of social democracy is that capitalism can never be
sufficiently "humanized" and that any attempt to suppress its economic
contradictions will only cause them to emerge elsewhere. For example,
attempts to reduce unemployment too much would result in inflation and
too much job security would erode labour discipline. In contrast
to social democracy, democratic socialists advocate a post-capitalist
economic system based on either market socialism combined with workers
self-management or on some form of participatory-economic
Marxian socialists argue that social democratic welfare policies
cannot resolve the fundamental structural issues of capitalism, such
as cyclical fluctuations, exploitation and alienation. Accordingly,
social democratic programs intended to ameliorate living conditions in
capitalism—such as unemployment benefits and taxation on
profits—creates further contradictions by further limiting the
efficiency of the capitalist system via reducing incentives for
capitalists to invest in further production. The welfare state
only serves to legitimize and prolong the exploitative and
contradiction-laden system of capitalism to society's detriment.
Critics of contemporary social democracy, such as Jonas Hinnfors,
argue that when social democracy abandoned
Marxism it also abandoned
socialism and has become a liberal capitalist movement,
effectively making social democrats similar to non-socialist parties
like the U.S. Democratic Party.
Market socialism is also critical of social democratic welfare states.
While one common goal of both concepts is to achieve greater social
and economic equality, market socialism does so by changes in
enterprise ownership and management, whereas social democracy attempts
to do so by subsidies and taxes on privately owned enterprises to
finance welfare programs. Franklin Roosevelt III and David Belkin
criticize social democracy for maintaining a property-owning
capitalist class which has an active interest in reversing social
democratic welfare policies and a disproportionate amount of power as
a class to influence government policy. The economists John
Pranab Bardhan point out that social democracy requires a
strong labour movement to sustain its heavy redistribution through
taxes and that it is idealistic to think such redistribution can be
accomplished in other countries with weaker labour movements. They
note that even in Scandinavian countries social democracy has been in
decline as the labour movement weakened.
Joseph Stalin was a vocal critic of reformist social democracy, later
coining the term "social fascism" to describe social democracy in the
1930s because in this period social democracy embraced a similar
corporatist economic model to the model supported by fascism. This
view was adopted by the Communist International.
There are critics[attribution needed] that claim that social democracy
abandoned socialism in the 1930s by endorsing Keynesian welfare
capitalism. The democratic socialist political theorist Michael
Harrington argues that social democracy historically supported
Keynesianism as part of a "social democratic compromise" between
capitalism and socialism. This compromise created welfare states and
thus Harrington contends that although this compromise did not allow
for the immediate creation of socialism, it "recognized noncapitalist,
and even anticapitalist, principles of human need over and above the
imperatives of profit". More recently, social democrats in favour
Third Way have been accused of having endorsed capitalism,
including by anti-
Third Way social democrats who have accused Third
Way proponents such as Lord Giddens of being anti-social democratic
and anti-socialist in practice.
Notable social democrats
José Batlle y Ordóñez
Victor L. Berger
Zulfikar Ali Bhutto
Gro Harlem Brundtland
Eugene V. Debs
Poul Nyrup Rasmussen
Michael Joseph Savage
Luis Guillermo Solís
Pieter Jelles Troelstra
Joop den Uyl
José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero
Frank P. Zeidler
Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador
Francisco de Sá Carneiro
List of social democratic parties
^ Heywood 2012, p. 128: "
Social democracy is an ideological
stance that supports a broad balance between market capitalism, on the
one hand, and state intervention, on the other hand. Being based on a
compromise between the market and the state, social democracy lacks a
systematic underlying theory and is, arguably, inherently vague. It is
nevertheless associated with the following views: (1) capitalism is
the only reliable means of generating wealth, but it is a morally
defective means of distributing wealth because of its tendency towards
poverty and inequality; (2) the defects of the capitalist system can
be rectified through economic and social intervention, the state being
the custodian of the public interest [...]"
^ Miller 1998, p. 827: "The idea of social democracy is now used
to describe a society the economy of which is predominantly
capitalist, but where the state acts to regulate the economy in the
general interest, provides welfare services outside of it and attempts
to alter the distribution of income and wealth in the name of social
^ Badie, Berg-Schlosser & Morlino 2011, p. 2423: "Social
democracy refers to a political tendency resting on three fundamental
features: (1) democracy (e.g., equal rights to vote and form parties),
(2) an economy partly regulated by the state (e.g., through
Keynesianism), and (3) a welfare state offering social support to
those in need (e.g., equal rights to education, health service,
employment and pensions)."
^ a b Weisskopf 1992, p. 10: "Thus social democrats do not try to
do away with either the market or private property ownership; instead,
they attempt to create conditions in which the operation of a
capitalist market economy will lead to more egalitarian outcomes and
encourage more democratic and more solidaristic practices than would a
more conventional capitalist system."
^ Gombert et al. 2009, p. 8; Sejersted 2011.
^ "Social democracy". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 10 August
^ Adams 1993, pp. 102-103: "The emergence of social democracy was
partly a result of the Cold War. People argued that if the Stalinist
Soviet empire, where the state controlled everything, showed socialism
in action, then socialism was not worth having. [...] The consensus
policies of a mixed and managed economy and the welfare state,
developed by the post-war Labour government, seemed in themselves to
provide a basis for a viable socialism that would combine prosperity
and freedom with social justice and the possibility of a full life for
everyone. They could be seen as a compromise between socialism and
^ Miller 1998, p. 827: "In the second, mainly post-war, phase,
social democrats came to believe that their ideals and values could be
achieved by reforming capitalism rather than abolishing it. They
favored a mixed economy in which most industries would be privately
owned, with only a small number of utilities and other essential
services in public ownership."
^ Jones 2001, p. 1410: "In addition, particularly since World War
II, distinctions have sometimes been made between social democrats and
socialists on the basis that the former have accepted the permanence
of the mixed economy and have abandoned the idea of replacing the
capitalist system with a qualitatively different socialist society."
^ Heywood 2012, pp. 125–128: "As an ideological stance, social
democracy took shape around the mid-twentieth century, resulting from
the tendency among western socialist parties not only to adopt
parliamentary strategies, but also to revise their socialist goals. In
particular, they abandoned the goal of abolishing capitalism and
sought instead to reform or ‘humanize’ it. Social democracy
therefore came to stand for a broad balance between the market
economy, on the one hand, and state intervention, on the other."
^ Hoefer 2013, p. 29.
^ Meyer & Hinchman 2007, p. 137.
^ Meyer & Hinchman 2007, p. 91; Upchurch, Taylor &
Mathers 2009, p. 51.
^ Romano 2006, p. 11.
^ Schorske 1993, p. 2.
^ Miller 1998, p. 827: "In this (first) phase, therefore, the
final aim of social democracy was to replace private ownership of
industry with state or social ownership, but the means were to be
those of parliamentary democracy."
^ Bronner 1999, p. 103.
^ Wright 1999, p. 86: "This was an ideology which, at bottom, was
grounded not in materialism but in morals. Thus Bernstein summoned up
Kant to point the way towards a politics of ethical choices."
^ Heywood 2012, p. 128: "The theoretical basis for social
democracy has been provided more by moral or religious beliefs, rather
than by scientific analysis. Social democrats have not accepted the
materialist and highly systematic ideas of Marx and Engels, but rather
advanced an essentially moral critique of capitalism."
^ Berman 2008, pp. 12–13: "Regardless of the specific policies
they advocated, one thing that joined all budding interwar social
democrats was a rejection of the passivity and economic determinism of
Marxism […] so they often embraced communitarian,
corporatist, and even nationalist appeals and urged their parties to
make the transition from workers' to 'people's' parties."
^ Adams 1993, p. 146.
^ a b c Bookchin 1998, p. 284.
^ a b Ishay 2008, p. 148.
^ Ishay 2008, p. 149–150.
^ a b c Aspalter 2001, p. 52.
^ a b c Aspalter 2001, p. 53.
^ a b Bookchin 1998, pp. 285–286.
^ Bookchin 1998, p. 219.
^ Bookchin 1998, p. 225.
^ Bookchin 1998, p. 229.
^ a b Bookchin 1998, p. 256.
^ Ishay 2008, p. 149.
^ Johnson, Walker & Gray 2014, pp. 119–120.
^ Johnson, Walker & Gray 2014, pp. 119–120; Marx 1972,
^ a b c Hollander 2011, p. 201.
^ Hollander 2011, p. 208.
^ a b Engels, Friedrich (1885). England in 1845 and in 1885.
Cited in Hollander 2011, p. 208.
^ Busky 2000, pp. 87–90.
^ Britain 2005, p. 29.
^ a b Clapson 2009, p. 328.
^ a b Britain 2005, p. 14.
^ Britain 2005, pp. 14, 29.
^ Berman 2008.
^ a b McBriar 1962, pp. 290–291.
^ McBriar 1962, p. 291.
^ a b McBriar 1962, p. 295.
^ McBriar 1962, p. 296.
^ Ward 1998, p. 27.
^ a b c Thompson 2006, p. 21.
^ Blaazer 2002, pp. 59–60.
^ a b Harrington 2011, p. 42.
^ McBriar 1962, p. 71.
^ Steger 1997, p. 67.
^ a b Steger 1997, p. 116.
^ Harrington 2011, pp. 43–59.
^ Berman 2006, pp. 38–39.
^ Harrington 2011, p. 251.
^ Steger 1997, pp. 236–237.
^ Harrington 2011, pp. 249–250.
^ a b c Steger 1997, p. 133.
^ Steger 1997, p. 141.
^ Wright 1999, p. 86.
^ Wright 1999, p. 88.
^ Berman 2006, p. 2.
^ a b Steger 1997, p. 96.
^ Jackson 2008: "Bernstein was also cautious about the use of social
spending to ameliorate capitalism; he ranked what would later be
called the 'welfare state' as a helpful intervention, but ultimately
secondary to more decisive policies intended to attack the source of
poverty and inequality. He expressed skepticism about state aid to the
unemployed, for example, which he feared might merely sanction a new
form of 'pauperism'."
^ a b c d Steger 1997, p. 154.
^ Luxemburg, Rosa. Reform or Revolution. p. 60. Cited in
Steger 1997, p. 96.
^ Steger 1997, p. 115.
^ Steger 1999, p. 182.
^ a b c d Steger 1999, p. 186.
^ a b Bernstein 2004, p. xix.
^ Harrington 2011, p. 47.
^ a b c d Steger 1997, pp. 217–218.
^ Steger 1997, p. 167.
^ a b c Steger 1997, pp. 218–219.
^ Steger 1997, p. 219.
^ a b Steger 1997.
^ Tucker & Roberts, p. 1158.
^ Morgan 1987, pp. 69–70.
^ Morgan 1987, p. 71.
^ Rubinstein 2006, pp. 46–47.
^ Chickering, p. 155.
^ a b Childs 2000, p. 2.
^ a b Berman 1998, p. 145.
^ Berman 1998, p. 146.
^ a b c Naarden 2002, p. 509.
^ a b Naarden 2002, p. 425.
^ Naarden 2002, p. 434.
^ Naarden 2002, p. 441.
^ a b Ceplair 1987, p. 78.
^ Alpert, p. 67.
^ a b c Notermans 2000, p. 102.
^ Notermans 2000, pp. 102, 110.
^ Notermans 2000, p. 111.
^ Sejersted 2011, p. 180.
^ a b c Macfarlane 1996, p. 44.
^ Morgan 2006, pp. 43–44.
^ a b Jeffreys 1999, p. 29.
^ Harrington 2011, p. 56.
^ a b Harrington 2011, p. 57.
^ Edinger 1956, p. 215.
^ Edinger 1956, pp. 219–220.
^ Macfarlane 1996, pp. 44–45.
^ Notermans 2000, p. 121.
^ Hart 1986, p. 13.
^ Socialist International. "Aims and Tasks of Democratic Socialism:
Declaration of the Socialist International", Socialist International,
First Congress, Frankfurt-am-Main, Federal Republic of Germany, 1951.
^ Adams 1993, p. 108.
^ a b c Merkel et al. 2008, p. 10.
^ a b c d e f g h Matthijs 2011, pp. 65–67.
^ Lamb & Docherty 2006, p. 14.
^ a b c d e Ellis 2004, p. 76.
^ Notermans 2000, p. 155.
^ Agrawal & Aggarwal 1989, p. 85.
^ Berger 2004, p. 73.
^ Janowsky 1959, p. 94.
^ Busky 2000, p. 11.
^ a b Orlow 2000, p. 108.
^ a b c d Orlow 2000, p. 190.
^ a b Adams 2001, p. 108.
^ a b c d Berman 2006, p. 190.
^ Diamond 2012, p. 4.
^ a b Van Oudenaren 1991, p. 144.
^ Declaration of Principles. Socialist International, 1989.
^ Lamb & Docherty 2006, p. 82.
^ a b N.D. Arora. Political Science for Civil Services Main
Examination. Tata McGraw-Hill Education, 2010. 9.22.
^ Romano 2006, p. 5.
^ a b c Cammack 2004, p. 155.
^ Tansey & Jackson 2008, p. 97.
^ a b Giddens 1998, p. 67.
^ Giddens 1998, p. 73.
^ Cammack 2004, p. 152.
^ Giddens 2003, p. 2.
^ a b Giddens 1998, p. 71.
^ Corfe 2010, p. 178.
^ Corfe 2010, p. 33.
^ Corfe 2010, pp. 33, 178.
^ Barrientos & Powell 2004, p. 18.
^ a b Lafontaine 2009, p. 7.
^ a b Hudson 2012, pp. 1–2.
^ Lafontaine 2009, p. 3.
^ Lafontaine 2009, p. 4.
^ Gamble 2012, p. 47.
^ Gamble 2012, p. 50.
^ Gamble 2012, p. 54.
^ Gamble 2012, pp. 54–55.
^ Pierpaolo Barbieri (25 April 2017). "The Death and Life of Social
Democracy". Foreign Affairs. Retrieved 20 October 2017.
^ Emily Tamkin (2 November 2016). "Mon Dieu, François Hollande's
Approval Rating Is at 4 Percent". Foreign Policy. Retrieved 20 October
^ Tom Angier (8 February 2017). "What French philosophy can tell us
about the EU, nationhood, and the decline of social democracy".
Retrieved 20 October 2017.
^ Espen Goffeng (12 September 2017). "En venstreside på villspor".
Retrieved 20 October 2017.
^ Håkon Arntsen (3 October 2017). "Ap har mistet folket". Retrieved
20 October 2017.
^ Kjell Werner (4 October 2017). "Ap ble for utydelig". Retrieved 20
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^ Jörg Michael Dostal (19 December 2016). "The Crisis of German
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^ Hanna Schwander; Philip Manow (10 September 2016). "'Modernize and
Die'? German social democracy and the electoral consequences of the
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^ Clarke 1981, p. 2.
^ Schweickart 2007: "Social democrats supported and tried to
strengthen the basic institutions of the welfare state—pensions for
all, public health care, public education, unemployment insurance.
They supported and tried to strengthen the labor movement. The latter,
as socialists, argued that capitalism could never be sufficiently
humanized and that trying to suppress the economic contradictions in
one area would only see them emerge in a different guise elsewhere
(e.g., if you push unemployment too low, you'll get inflation; if job
security is too strong, labor discipline breaks down.)"
^ Schweickart 2007: "Virtually all [democratic] socialists have
distanced themselves from the economic model long synonymous with
socialism (i.e., the Soviet model of a nonmarket, centrally planned
economy) [...] Some have endorsed the concept of market socialism, a
postcapitalist economy that retains market competition but socializes
the means of production and, in some versions, extends democracy to
the workplace. Some hold out for a nonmarket, participatory economy.
All democratic socialists agree on the need for a democratic
alternative to capitalism."
^ Ticktin 1998, pp. 60–61: "The Marxist answers that...it
involves limiting the incentive system of the market through providing
minimum wages, high levels of unemployment insurance, reducing the
size of the reserve army of labour, taxing profits, and taxing the
wealthy. As a result, capitalists will have little incentive to invest
and the workers will have little incentive to work.
because, as Marx remarked, it is a system of economic force
^ Hinnfors 2006, pp. 117, 137–139.
^ Weisskopf 1994, pp. 314–315: "
Social democracy achieves
greater egalitarianism via ex post government taxes and subsidies,
where market socialism does so via ex ante changes in patterns of
enterprise ownership [...] the maintenance of property-owning
capitalists under social democracy assures the presence of a
disproportionately powerful class with a continuing interest in
challenging social democratic government policies."
^ Bardhan & Roemer 1992, p. 104: "Since it [social democracy]
permits a powerful capitalist class to exist (90 percent of productive
assets are privately owned in Sweden), only a strong and unified labor
movement can win the redistribution through taxes that is
characteristic of social democracy. It is idealistic to believe that
tax concessions of this magnitude can be effected simply through
electoral democracy without an organized labor movement, when
capitalists organize and finance influential political parties. Even
in the Scandinavian countries, strong apex labor organizations have
been difficult to sustain and social democracy is somewhat on the
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