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fascism vs. socialism

fascism vs. socialism: What’s the difference?

Fascism is a system of government (or a political movement) led by a dictator, typically one who forcefully and often violently suppresses dissent and promotes nationalism and often racism. Fascist regimes also often control all industry and commerce. Socialism is an economic or social system based on collective, public ownership and control of the resources used to make and distribute goods or provide services. Both terms are often used broadly, and there is widespread debate about exactly what each term entails and about what current or historical systems they should be applied to. Some people view them as opposite ends of the political spectrum (with fascism on the right wing and socialism on the left wing), while others may consider both fascist and socialist systems as types of totalitarianism, and still others have different conceptions of how they relate to each other.

[ fash-iz-uhm ]
  1. a governmental system led by a dictator having complete power, forcibly suppressing opposition and criticism, regimenting all industry, commerce, etc., and emphasizing an aggressive nationalism and often racism.
  2. the philosophy, principles, or methods of fascism.
  3. a political movement that employs the principles and methods of fascism, especially the one established by Mussolini in Italy 1922–43.
[ soh-shuh-liz-uhm ]
  1. a theory or system of social organization that advocates the ownership and control of the means of production and distribution, capital, land, etc., by the community as a whole, usually through a centralized government.
  2. procedure or practice in accordance with this theory.
  3. (in Marxist theory) the stage following capitalism in the transition of a society to communism, characterized by the imperfect implementation of collectivist principles.

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