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a petit bourgeois Utopian philosophy advocating universal leveling as the organizing principle of society.

In its earliest forms, in classical times and the Middle Ages, egalitarianism was associated with a demand for equal redistribution of the land. Under early capitalism two basic trends developed within egalitarianism. The first advocated equalization of the property of individual producers; the institution of private property was to be retained. The Jacobin dictatorship attempted to put into practice this ideal, which derived from the teachings of J.-J. Rousseau. The second trend in egalitarianism was associated with the earliest communist Utopian groups, such as the Babouvists; it advocated equal distribution of labor and goods on the basis of communal property.

K. Marx and F. Engels considered the principles of universal asceticism and crude leveling, which were characteristic of early communist literature, to be reactionary elements (see Soch., 2nd ed., vol. 4, p. 455). The reactionary features of egalitarianism found particularly vivid expression in “barracks communism,” which reduced people’s capabilities and needs to one level. Under conditions in which the proletariat has not yet taken shape as a class, the advancement of the principle of egalitarianism against the exploiting classes is, as Engels said, “a necessary stage of transition” from plebeian and petit bourgeois revolutionism to proletarian revolutionism (ibid., vol. 7, p. 377). In modern times, however, egalitarianism is a reactionary principle that is in opposition to the revolutionary ideals and the principle of equality advanced by the working class.


References in periodicals archive ?
Moral egalitarianism is therefore an inherent feature of Smith's normative ethics.
To young men questioning the egalitarianism of the Left," writes Easton, "the insights of the philosophers they studied offered fortitude, making the case that the leveling of society would lead to a worship of mediocrity.
Has no-one told Tony Blair that egalitarianism was one of the founding principles of the Labour movement which he now leads?
Hurston shows that even the folk community of the Everglades in not in fact immune to prejudice and snobbery, and it is just at the point where the book changes from optimistic quest to gothic horror thriller that the admirable egalitarianism of the folk community shows the ideological cracks - racism, materialism, and a magical belief in the power and goodness of those in authority - that threaten to undermine it completely.
Liberty and Equality takes an unflinching look at the difficult, often emotional issues that arise when egalitarianism collides with individual liberties.
Having written extensively about Pentecostal-Charismatic Christianity in Chile and Tanzania, Danish anthropologist Lindhardt generally agrees with the idea that Latin American Pentecostalism, by virtue of its theological egalitarianism and the organizational structures of the churches, subverts secular and Catholic principles of social status.
This came during the 4th workshop as part of the 2013 United Nations Public Service Forum (UNPSF) organized at the Bahrain International Circuit (BIC) yesterday (Tuesday: 25 June 2013) and discussed the theme (Public service provision for the sake of egalitarianism between both genders).
ISLAMABAD -- President Asif Ali Zardari has said that the Father of the Nation Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah had propounded the principles of democracy, constitutionalism and egalitarianism throughout his life.
However, an alternative form of egalitarianism may be contrasted with the variety to which it is often presupposed egalitarians subscribe.
President Zardari said Pakistan was created for the welfare of masses and could prosper only by strengthening the forces of democracy and egalitarianism in which every individual is allowed opportunities for the blossoming of his creative potential.
One of the points that is made in the debate over luck egalitarianism is that even if it is true, it is not clear that it leads to socialism.
Mr Walsh should get a dictionary and look up the definition for egalitarianism because it means him too.