Before beginning the study of the social system I have chosen to call 'state socialism', it is necessary to define the term and to describe the societies to which it is held to apply. A society may be defined as a behavioural system having three components : a distinct set of central or dominant value and beliefs, a number of social institutions, and patterns of interactions between individuals and institutions. What, then, are the distinguishing features of state socialism? The dominant values are those ofMarxism-Leninism,andthepeculiar institutions of the system stem from the state-owned means of production which determine man's relationship to property. The values laid down in the charter of the society are those of socialism : that is, a system of beliefs focused on the ultimate perfectibility of man, on the determining influence of class forces operating through the laws of historical and dialectical materialism. In state-socialist societies, the dominant institution is the Communist Party, which is considered to lead the working class and provides an authoritative interpretation of the laws of historical development, which in turn legitimate the Party's own political power. The appellation state focuses on the central role played by government and Party institutions in the process of these societies : not only do ownership and control of the means of production legally reside with the state, but it has the authority to mobilise the population to achieve the goals defined in the 'official charter'. In the patterns of interactions between institutions, the state (government and ruling party) plays a dominant role. Let us now turn from analytical concepts to consider some historical generalisations.
Table of Contents
Introduction -- PART ONE: META-THEORIES OF STATE SOCIALISM -- 1 Marxist Approaches -- The Legitimoting Ideology of State Socialist Societies . The Legitimoting Function of Marxism-Leninism . The Dictatorship of the Working Class: the People's Democracy . Socialist Society. Marxist Criticisms of the Soviet Form of Socialism . Bureaucratic State Capitalism . Maoist Counterpoint . Transitional Economy of a Workers' State 36. Marxism and Soviet Society. -- 2 Non-Marxist Meta-Theories Totalitarianism as an Explanation of State-Socialist Society . The Scope and Values of Rule . The Role of Technology . Criticisms of the Totalitarian Syndrome . Convergence to a Common Type of Industrial Society . Industrialism . Criticisms of Convergence . -- 3 A Developmental Approach -- PART TWO: POLITICAL SYSTEM AND PROCESS -- 4 The Political System and Culture -- The Political Structure . Political Culture . Political Supports . Systemic Contradictions: the Intelligentsia as an 'Ascendanf Class . The Manual Working Class -- as an Opposition . Forms of Dissent and Deviance . Juvenile Delinquency and Alcoholism . The Movement for Individual Rights . Nationalities . Religious Movements . Composition of the Various Opposition Movements . Dissent and Soviet Society . -- 5 The Political Elites Political Leadership . The Soviet Union , Poland, Hungary, Czechoslovakia and Bulgaria , China . -- 6 Counterpoints to the Soviet Model Decentralisation and Workers' Control in Yugoslavia . The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution in People's China. Socialist Pluralism: the 'Reform Movemenf in Czechoslovakia . -- 10 The Socialist Industrial State -- PART THREE: THE SOCIAL STUCTURE -- 7 Social Inequalities: Occupational and Status Groupings page Skilled and Unskilled; Manual and Non-Manual . Occupational Prestige. Educational Opportunity . Male and Female Differentiation . Social Mobility . -- Bibliography – Index.