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Politics and Government in central and Eastern Europe Said Ahmed Title Why did Communism collapse In this essay I will examine what Communism is the factors that have led to the collapse of Communism and how Communism collapsed in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union Communism is a political philosophy based upon the principle of collective ownership of both property and the means of production Communists therefore view history from the perspective of class struggle and seek to establish a classless society or in its most ideal form a dictatorship of the proletariat1 The idea of a communal society a fundamental element of communist thought is not knew but dates back to the ancient Greeks and was advanced by Plato in his philosophical work the Republic and T Mores Utopia in 1516 which promoted the idea of a communal society The Industrial Revolution and the severe economic hardships suffered by workers however gave rise to socialism in the late 18th and early 19th centuries and modern communism emerged from the socialist movement first as a radical wing of socialism and finally in early twentieth century as a separate and distinct ideology of revolution and collective ownership The fundamental rivalry between communist and capitalist societies has been a factor in world history since the creation of the first Communist State the USSR and therefore since one was destined to collapse at the end Communism collapsed There are many factors which have contributed over the years to the collapse of communism such as the Soviet economic stagnation the political corruption and the lack of reforms but the actual collapse of Communism is mainly due to Gorbachevs radical reforms and this is what I am going to focus on The momentous changes that took place in the Soviet Union under the leadership of Mikhail Gorbachev are usually described by two Russian words glasnost and perestroika The terms glasnost and
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