Communism Quiz

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By jwblackwell



9 Questions

What is the goal of communism?

Which of the following is NOT a school of thought included in communism?

What is the relationship between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie according to communism?

What is the difference between socialism and communism?

Which country was the world's first nominally Communist state?

What is the difference between nationalization and socialization according to Marxism?

What is the difference between Marxism and Leninism?

What is the theory behind Trotskyism?

What is anarcho-communism?


Communism is a left-wing to far-left sociopolitical, philosophical, and economic ideology within the socialist movement, whose goal is the establishment of a communist society. Communism involves the absence of private property, social classes, money, and the state, with common ownership of the means of production, distribution, and exchange. Communism includes a variety of schools of thought, which broadly include Marxism, Leninism, and libertarian communism, among others. The relationship between the proletariat (working class) and the bourgeoisie (capitalist class) is exploitative, and communism aims to put the working class in power and establish common ownership of property. Communism in its modern form grew out of the socialist movement in 19th-century Europe and became the dominant political tendency, along with social democracy, within the international socialist movement by the early 1920s. Around one-third of the world's population lived under Communist governments during most of the 20th century, but with the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, several previously Communist governments repudiated or abolished Communist rule altogether. Communism has been distinguished from socialism since the 1840s, with socialism seeking distributive justice and communism preferring economic equality. Communist thought can be traced back to Ancient Greece and Rome, medieval Christian Church, and 16th-century English writer Thomas More. In the 17th century, communist thought surfaced again in England, where a Puritan religious group known as the Diggers advocated the abolition of private ownership of land. The October Revolution in Russia set the conditions for the rise to state power of Vladimir Lenin's Bolsheviks, which was the first time any avowedly communist party reached that position. Communist states themselves did not describe themselves as communist or claim to have achieved communism; they referred to themselves as being a socialist state that is in the process of constructing communism. The emergence of the Soviet Union as the world's first nominally Communist state led to communism's widespread association with the Soviet economic model, which in practice functioned as a form of state capitalism.Communist States: A Summary

  • Marx warned against attempts to impose a historico-philosophy theory of the arche générale on every people, whatever the historic circumstances in which it finds itself, and stated that Russia might be able to skip the stage of bourgeois rule through the Obshchina.

  • The Bolsheviks' successful rise to power was based upon the slogans such as "Peace, Bread, and Land", which tapped into the massive public desire for an end to Russian involvement in World War I, the peasants' demand for land reform, and popular support for the soviets.

  • The Bolsheviks moved to hand power to the Second All-Russian Congress of Soviets of Workers' and Soldiers' Deputies in the October Revolution.

  • The Draft Decree on the Dissolution of the Constituent Assembly was issued by the Central Executive Committee of the Soviet Union, a committee dominated by Lenin, who had previously supported a multi-party system of free elections.

  • The Soviet Union was established in 1922, and before the broad ban in 1921, there were several factions in the Communist party.

  • Mao Zedong and the Chinese Communist Party came to power in 1949 as the Nationalist government headed by the Kuomintang fled to the island of Taiwan.

  • Mao charged that Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev was the leader of a "revisionist clique" which had turned against Marxism and Leninism and was now setting the stage for the restoration of capitalism.

  • Rejecting the Soviet model of rapid urbanization, Mao Zedong and his top aide Deng Xiaoping launched the Great Leap Forward in 1957–1961 with the goal of industrializing China overnight, using the peasant villages as the base rather than large cities.

  • The Cultural Revolution was an upheaval that targeted intellectuals and party leaders from 1966 through 1976.

  • Mao's government was responsible for vast numbers of deaths with estimates ranging from 40 to 80 million victims through starvation, persecution, prison labour, and mass executions.

  • There were also many developments in libertarian Marxism, especially during the 1960s with the New Left.

  • By the 1960s and 1970s, many Western communist parties were part of several post-war governments.Communism: A Summary

  • Eurocommunism was a democratic road to socialism that distanced itself from orthodox supporters of the Soviet Union.

  • The Soviet Union was dissolved on December 26, 1991, and replaced by the Commonwealth of Independent States.

  • China has managed to bring down the poverty rate from 53% to just 8% since 1978, thanks to economic reforms.

  • Communist political thought and theory are diverse but share several core elements, such as identifying political parties by class and economic interest.

  • Marxist theory holds that class conflict arises in capitalist societies due to contradictions between the material interests of the oppressed proletariat and the bourgeoisie.

  • The dictatorship of the proletariat is seen as the vehicle for fundamental society-wide changes and ultimately leads to the emergence of new economic systems.

  • Critique of political economy is a form of social critique that rejects the various social categories and structures that constitute the mainstream discourse concerning the forms and modalities of resource allocation and income distribution in the economy.

  • Marxian economics and its proponents view capitalism as economically unsustainable and incapable of improving the living standards of the population.

  • An important concept in Marxism is socialization, i.e. social ownership, versus nationalization.

  • Leninism proposes the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat, led by a revolutionary vanguard party, as the political prelude to the establishment of communism.

  • Marxism-Leninism is a political ideology developed by Joseph Stalin, based on Marxism and Leninism.

  • The philosophy of orthodox Marxism includes the understanding that material development is the primary agent of change in the structure of society and of human social relations.Overview of Different Types of Communism

  • Marxism-Leninism was the official ideology of 20th-century Communist parties, and was developed after the death of Lenin; its three principles were dialectical materialism, the leading role of the Communist party, and a planned economy with industrialization and agricultural collectivization.

  • Social fascism was a theory supported by the Comintern and affiliated Communist parties in the early 1930s, which held that social democracy was a variant of fascism because it stood in the way of a dictatorship of the proletariat.

  • Anti-revisionism is a position which emerged in the 1950s in opposition to the reforms and Khrushchev Thaw of Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev.

  • Trotskyism is a Marxist and Leninist tendency that supports the theory of permanent revolution and world revolution rather than the two-stage theory and Stalin's socialism in one country.

  • Maoism is the theory derived from the teachings of the Chinese political leader Mao Zedong, which was widely applied as the guiding political and military ideology of the Communist Party of China and as the theory guiding revolutionary movements around the world.

  • Eurocommunism was a revisionist trend in the 1970s and 1980s within various Western European communist parties, claiming to develop a theory and practice of social transformation more relevant to their region.

  • Libertarian Marxism is a broad range of economic and political philosophies that emphasize the anti-authoritarian aspects of Marxism.

  • Council communism is a movement that originated from Germany and the Netherlands in the 1920s, whose primary organization was the Communist Workers Party of Germany.

  • Left communism is the range of communist viewpoints held by the communist left, which criticizes the political ideas and practices espoused, particularly following the series of revolutions that brought World War I to an end by Bolsheviks and social democrats.

  • Anarcho-communism is a libertarian theory of anarchism and communism which advocates the abolition of the state, private property, and capitalism in favor of common ownership of the means of production.

  • Christian communism is a theological and political theory based upon the view that the teachings of Jesus Christ compel Christians to support religious communism as the ideal social system.


How much do you know about communism and its various schools of thought? Test your knowledge with our quiz on the history, philosophy, and political movements associated with communism. From Marxism and Leninism to Maoism and anarcho-communism, this quiz covers the different types of communism and their key features. Challenge yourself and see how well you understand the complexities of this sociopolitical ideology.

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