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Reflections on the Failure of Socialism

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  14 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
Hardcover, 128 pages
Published June 29th 1982 by Greenwood Press (first published 1955)
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Jeff Daiell
Mar 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is a humane memoir by an author who originally supported Socialism but gradually came to realize that civil liberties will not last long once The State controls the economy.

Jeff Daiell
Mark Smaling
There's a reason first-hand information is called eye witness testimony and is admissable in court. This man lived in the Soviet Union for two years, then came back to America a libertarian. Nothing like socialism in practice to debunk all its idealistic theories.
Michael Shoemake
Dec 24, 2012 rated it did not like it
A book stuffed with ad hominem and conflation of arguments. In many chapters Eastman spends his time insulting liberals rather than deconstructing socialist philosophy, and several of his arguments are bad. Here's a couple and why they're bad:

"Acquired traits are not hereditary, and therefore human nature will not change to better suit communism." It's plainly clear that while the genetic makeup of human beings will not change, the way one responds to one's environment growing up is almost infin
...more
Ben
Jul 18, 2012 added it
Reading this to research a paper on Eastman. Seems to be a logical consistency to his thought, in that he maintained from his early Marxism a devotion to scientific certainty and a disdain for reform as an intelligent solution. Given this, when he became disgusted with the Soviet Experiment, he had no consistent choice other than to attach himself to the libertarian right, and even briefly with McCarthyism. There is an irony in that his criticisms of the socialist project could apply perfectly t ...more
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107568
Max Forrester Eastman was an American writer on literature, philosophy and society, a poet, and a prominent political activist. For many years, Eastman was a supporter of socialism, a leading patron of the Harlem Renaissance and an activist for a number of liberal and radical causes. In later life, however, his views turned sharply, and he became an advocate of free market economics and an anti-Co ...more
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