social democracy

social democracy
   A moderate, reformist strand of socialism that favours a balance between the market and the state, rather than the wholesale abolition of capitalism. Originally deriving from Marxian socialism, social democracy has become associated with revisionism that allows for the possibility of peaceful change as a means of attaining the end goal, rather than revolution. In Britain, most members of the political Left argue that capitalism can be transformed and fundamental social and political change achieved by a gradualist approach to reform. Some still describe themselves as socialists, but in the postwar era ‘social democracy’ was increasingly the term commonly applied to those on the centre-right of the party who were uninterested in public ownership but favoured movement towards a more equal society. According to its constitution, Labour has always been a social democratic party.

Glossary of UK Government and Politics . 2013.

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  • social democracy — UK / US noun Word forms social democracy : singular social democracy plural social democracies 1) [uncountable] the belief that society should change from capitalism to socialism in a gradual, peaceful, and democratic way 2) [countable] a country …   English dictionary

  • social democracy — noun Date: 1850 1. a political movement advocating a gradual and peaceful transition from capitalism to socialism by democratic means 2. a democratic welfare state that incorporates both capitalist and socialist practices • social democrat noun • …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • social democracy — noun a socialist system of government achieved by democratic means. Derivatives social democrat noun …   English new terms dictionary

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