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Hoot! You just asked your first question! Hang tight while I find people to answer it for you. You can thank people who give you good answers by clicking the 'Good Answer' button on the right!
Socialism is an economic system in which the means of production are publicly or commonly owned and controlled co-operatively, or a political philosophy advocating such a system and
a theory of government or a system of government in which independent communes participate in a federation
You are probably asking the difference between 'socialism' and 'COMMUNISM' and not 'communALism'. While 'communism' is a "a theory or system of social organization based on the holding of all property in common, actual ownership being ascribed to the community as a whole or to the state", 'communalism' refers to "Strong devotion to the interests of one's own minority or ethnic group rather than those of society as a whole".
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if you in fact meant communalism, then Deena is correct. If you meant communism, I have heard various arguments from different people, which include:
there is no real difference, people say socialism as it sounds better;
socialists believe in the same economic system but base their ideas on democracy such as we know it;
socialism is a transitional stage before communism;
socialists are communists, but want to distance themselves from USSR etc as that is not the type of communism that people were dreaming of (it was not the kind of communism that Marx dreamed of...)
question to joz. China is an example of socialism, but it appears to be closer to capitalism. Can you explain the reason for this? thanks in advance
Socialists would say that China is no longer socialist. I don't really know a lot about China, but the Chinese government does not want to lose any power, and as the 'communist' party has power in China they continue to call themselves communist. I think the Western countries like to say they are communist to keep them a little discredited and to keep the idea alive that communism and dictatorship/human rights abuses go hand in hand.
That is my understanding but like I said, I'm no China expert.