[sin-di-kuh-liz-uh m]
See more synonyms for syndicalism on
  1. a form or development of trade unionism, originating in France, that aims at the possession of the means of production and distribution, and ultimately at the control of society, by federated bodies of industrial workers, and that seeks to realize its purposes through general strikes, terrorism, sabotage, etc.
  2. an economic system in which workers own and manage industry.

Origin of syndicalism

From the French word syndicalisme, dating back to 1905–10. See syndical, -ism
Related formssyn·di·cal·ist, adjective, nounsyn·di·cal·is·tic, adjectivean·ti·syn·di·cal·ism, nounan·ti·syn·di·cal·ist, noun, adjectivepro·syn·di·cal·ism, nounpro·syn·di·cal·ist, noun, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for syndicalism

mobocracy, ochlocracy, syndicalism

Examples from the Web for syndicalism

Historical Examples of syndicalism

  • In syndicalism in some form Russell sees the most promise for reform of government.

  • That is why imaginative socialists have shown so great an interest in "syndicalism."

    A Preface to Politics

    Walter Lippmann

  • Some such impulse as that is what marks off syndicalism from the other revolts of labor.

    A Preface to Politics

    Walter Lippmann

  • In another connection I pointed to autonomy as the hope of syndicalism.

    A Preface to Politics

    Walter Lippmann

  • Socialism and Syndicalism have not robbed them of life's joys.

    Through Finland in Carts

    Ethel Brilliana Alec-Tweedie

British Dictionary definitions for syndicalism


  1. a revolutionary movement and theory advocating the seizure of the means of production and distribution by syndicates of workers through direct action, esp a general strike
  2. an economic system resulting from such action
Derived Formssyndical, adjectivesyndicalist, adjective, nounsyndicalistic, adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for syndicalism

1907, from French syndicalisme "movement to transfer ownership of means of production and distribution to industrial workers," from syndical "of a labor union," from syndic "chief representative" (see syndic).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper