Was Soviet Society Socialist?

Publication type Article
Status Published
Affiliation: Lomonosov Moscow State University
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow
Journal nameSotsiologicheskie issledovaniya
EditionIssue 12

The article is devoted to the typological characteristics of the Soviet society, which the author considers as a variant of the «Asian mode of production» that emerged in a European country on an industrial rather than agricultural basis. The author takes the view that the governmentalization of the means of production cannot be considered a step towards socialist construction, if it does not lead to the subsequent socialization of these means. A sign of social ownership is the absence of capable people in society who are forced to sell (give up) their labor power to the owners of the means of production, regardless of whether they are represented by individuals, groups of people, or even social institutions in which people perform pre-determined social roles. In the USSR, the author argues, non-parcellular private property emerged over the conditions, objects, and implements of labor, collectively owned by the party and state elite, who used the labor of people deprived of property and the ability to influence economic and social policy. The fact that the bureaucratic elite does not always seek personal enrichment, and some of the workers did not feel themselves the object of exploitation, does not change the typological characteristics of society. The author examines the objective reasons for the collapse of the USSR, which he considers the collapse of the polytarian and not socialist system, which has a historical perspective and can be implemented on a higher level of technology and technology development than now.

Keywordscapitalism, socialism, communism, Asian mode of production, politarism
AcknowledgmentThis article is a translation of: Момджян К.Х. Было ли советское общество социалистическим? // Sotsiologicheskie Issledovaniia. 2021. No 12: 37–45. DOI: 10.31857/S013216250018018-2
Publication date24.12.2021
Number of characters29467
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