Socialism Course: Introduction

  1. Waterfall is a guided, in-depth program for everyone interested in studying systematically issues upon which Objectivism has something distinctive and important to say.

  2. Executive Summaries written by Senior Scholar Stephen Hicks, Researcher Andrei Volkov, and others are provided for the longer items to give busy people an essentialized overview and/or to highlight the key themes for those who will pursue the in-depth reading.

  3. This course: Socialism. Examine the aspirations, arguments, strategies, and disasters of socialist theory and practice—as well as explore the strongest criticisms of socialism—from many philosophers, economists, and historians such as Karl Marx, Ludwig von Mises, and, of course, Ayn Rand.

  4. Authors included in the Socialism course: Ayn Rand, Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin, Robert Heilbroner, Alan Charles Kors, George Orwell, Michael Harrington, Ludwig von Mises, Stephen Hicks, Jennifer Grossmann, Steven Horwitz, and C.S. Lewis. 

  5. Links to thirteen additional recommended items about the morality, economics, politics, and history of socialism are provided for those wanting further study.


Course Outline

Week 2

Executive Summary of Karl Marx's and Friedrich Engels's Manifesto of the Communist Party

Week 3

Executive Summary of Vladimir Lenin's "How to Organize Competition"

Week 4

Executive Summary of Part I of Ludwig von Mises's Socialism: An Economic and Sociological Analysis

Week 5

Executive Summary of Robert Heilbroner's "Socialism"

Week 6

Executive Summary of Ayn Rand's "The Left: Old and New"

Week 7

An episode of Dr. Hicks's Open College Podcast on "Your Sex Life Under Socialism"

Week 8

Executive Summary of George Orwell's "Review of The Totalitarian Enemy by F. Borkenau"

Week 9

Executive Summary of Alan Charles Kors's lecture "Socialism's Legacy: Lest We Forget"

Week 10

Can Socialism be Democratic?