Some Major Political Ideologies

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Information about Some Major Political Ideologies

Published on February 15, 2009

Author: technolote


Some Major Political Ideologies of the 20th and 21st centuries (in alphabetical order)

capitalism an economic system in which wealth, and the means of producing wealth, are privately owned and controlled rather than commonly, publicly, or state-owned and controlled. (

Image: 'Enjoy Capitalism'

communism a socioeconomic structure and political ideology that promotes the establishment of an egalitarian, classless, stateless society based on common ownership and control of the means of production and property in general. (

Image: 'les années sans lumiere'

democratism a philosophy that insists on the right and the capacity of a people, acting either directly or through representatives, to control their institutions for their own purposes. Such a philosophy places a high value on the equality of individuals and would free people as far as possible from restraints not self- imposed. It insists that necessary restraints be imposed only by the consent of the majority and that they conform to the principle of equality. (

Image: 'Out to Vote 6/7'

despotism a form of government by a single authority, either an individual or tightly knit group, which rules with absolute political power. (

Image: 'Napoleon'

fascism a governmental system led by a dictator having complete power, forcibly suppressing opposition and criticism, regimenting all industry, commerce, etc., and emphasizing an aggressive nationalism and often racism ( Fascist movements promote violent conflict between nations, political factions, and races as part of a social darwinist view that conflict between these groups is natural and a part of evolution. (

In descending order of size: Hitler, Stalin, Castro, Saddam, Pinochet. Image: 'Russian Dolls' 95492938@N00/116054798

fundamentalism Fundamentalism refers to a belief in, and strict adherence to a set of basic principles, often religious in nature. (

Image: 'untitled'

liberalism a political or social philosophy advocating the freedom of the individual, parliamentary systems of government, nonviolent modification of political, social, or economic institutions to assure unrestricted development in all spheres of human endeavor, and governmental guarantees of individual rights and civil liberties. ( Liberalism emphasizes individual rights and equality of opportunity. (

Image: 'New York's Liberty Island - Statue Of+Liberty+&+Seagull'

marxism the system of economic and political thought developed by Karl Marx, along with Friedrich Engels, esp. the doctrine that the state throughout history has been a device for the exploitation of the masses by a dominant class, that class struggle has been the main agency of historical change, and that the capitalist system, containing from the first the seeds of its own decay, will inevitably, after the period of the dictatorship of the proletariat, be superseded by a socialist order and a classless society. (

Image: 'Communists'

monarchism the advocacy of the establishment, preservation, or restoration of a monarchy as a form of government in a nation. A monarchist is an individual who supports this form of government out of principle, independent from the person, the Monarch. (

nationalism an ideology, a sentiment, a form of culture, or a social movement that focuses on the nation. ( the policy or doctrine of asserting the interests of one's own nation, viewed as separate from the interests of other nations or the common interests of all nations. (

Image: 'Chicago's Free Tibet Protest March 18, 2008'

nazism officially National Socialism, refers to the ideology and practices of the National Socialist German Workers’ Party under Adolf Hitler, and the policies adopted by the dictatorial government of Nazi Germany from 1933 to 1945. Nazism is often considered by scholars to be a form of fascism. ( The ideology and practice of the Nazis, especially the policy of racist nationalism, national expansion, and state control of the economy. (

republicanism Republicanism is the ideology of governing a nation as a republic, with an emphasis on liberty, rule of law, popular sovereignty and the civic virtue practiced by citizens. Republicanism always stands in opposition to any form of dictatorship or tyranny in the political realm. More broadly, it refers to a political system that protects liberty, especially by incorporating a rule of law that cannot be arbitrarily ignored by the government. (

Democratic People’s Republic of Korea Image: 'Wonsan, North Korea' People’s Republic of China ? Image: 'Flag'

socialism refers to a broad set of economic theories of social organization advocating public or state ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods, and a society characterized by equal opportunities for all individuals, with a fair or egalitarian method of compensation. ( The Red Star

totalitarianism a modern autocratic government in which the state involves itself in all facets of society, including the daily life of its citizens. A totalitarian government seeks to control not only all economic and political matters but the attitudes, values, and beliefs of its population, erasing the distinction between state and society. The citizen's duty to the state becomes the primary concern of the community, and the goal of the state is the replacement of existing society with a perfect society. ( Totalitarianism (or totalitarian rule) is a concept used to describe political systems whereby a state regulates nearly every aspect of public and private life. Totalitarian regimes or movements maintain themselves in political power by means of an official all-embracing ideology and propaganda disseminated through the state-controlled mass media, a single party that controls the state, personality cults, control over the economy, regulation and restriction of free discussion and criticism, the use of mass surveillance, and widespread use of terror tactics. (

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