Praxis pp 317-332 | Cite as

Social Equality and Inequality in the Bourgeois World and in Socialism

  • Srdjan Vrcan
Part of the Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science book series (BSPS, volume 36)


Considering equality in the modern sense which — as F. Engels has pointed out — is based on the fact that every man is a human being and that owing to this all members of a society have the right to be equally politically or socially important,1 there would be obviously little use to discuss the problem of social equality in the modern bourgeois world and in socialism today within the framework of a debate about the human nature in general or about a ‘good’ society in general. Nor would there be much use in discussing the same problem searching for possible consequences of an allegedly inherent egalitarian tendency already dominant, as Marx mentions too, in the 19th century.


Social Inequality Social Equality Social Differentiation Radical Alternative Socialist Society 
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    K. Marx, F. Engels, Works, vol. 20, Berlin 1962, pp. 95–96.Google Scholar
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  3. 3.
    It is worth remembering the formulation from The German Ideology: “But one of the most vital principles of communism, a principle which distinguishes it from all reactionary socialism, is its empiric view, based on a knowledge of man’s nature, that differences of brain and of intellectual capacity do not imply any differences whatsoever in the nature of the stomach and of physical weeds; therefore the false tenet, based upon existing circumstances, “to each according to his abilities”, must be changed, insofar as it relates to enjoyment in its narrower sense, into the tenet, “to each according to his need”; in other words, a different form of activity, of labour, does not justify inequality, confers no privileges in respect of possession and enjoyment.” K. Marx, The German Ideology (Moscow, 1964), p. 593.Google Scholar
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Copyright information

© D. Reidel Publishing Company, Dordrecht, Holland 1979

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  • Srdjan Vrcan

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