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a sociopolitical doctrine that became widespread in the bourgeois social sciences with the transition of the capitalist society to the stage of imperialism. In contrast to the Marxist thesis that the class struggle is the motive force of social development, the founders of solidarism, including the French political figure L. Bourgeois, author of Solidarity (1902), held that life in any society, especially bourgeois society, depends above all on the solidarity of its members.
While solidarism was directed against Marxism, it was also a reaction against the extreme individualism of bourgeois ideology in the period of industrial capitalism. Solidarism was the basis of several early 20th-century bourgeois teachings of sociology, for example, those of E. Durkheim, as well as theories of state and law, for example, those of L. Duguit. It was used by bourgeois reformists to justify “class cooperation and conciliation.” Solidarism is also closely linked with the doctrine that “property imposes obligations,” which claims that private capitalist ownership renders a valuable service to society. Reactionary ideologists have used solidarism to justify the theory and nature of corporatism. Because it was employed for demagogic ends by fascist leaders, solidarism acquired derogatory connotations after the fall of the fascist regimes. In the 1960’s and 1970’s, however, solidarism has been used to justify such bourgeois concepts as “social partnership” and the “free association of labor and capital.” Solidarism is an important element of the political doctrine of clericalism.