Show Summary Details
Page of

date: 17 October 2021

p. 263. States, societies, and the collapse of socialismlocked

p. 263. States, societies, and the collapse of socialismlocked

  • Colin Ward


Anarchists make an important distinction between society and the state. Social spontaneity is highly valued by anarchists. They are frequently told that their antipathy to the state is outmoded, since the main function of the modern state is the provision of social welfare. But social welfare in Britain rose not from the state, but from a vast network of friendly societies and aid organizations. ‘States, societies, and the collapse of socialism’ examines anarchist theories on the division between the political and the social and how and why socialism was doomed to failure.

Access to the complete content on Very Short Introductions online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.