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In political science, statism is the belief that the state should control either economic or social policy, or both, to some degree.[1] Statism is effectively the opposite of anarchism,[1] an individual who supports the existence of the state is a statist. Statism can take many forms from minarchism to totalitarianism. Minarchists prefer a minimal or night-watchman state to protect people from aggression, theft, breach of contract, and fraud with military, police, and courts.[2] Some may also include fire departments, prisons, and other functions.[2] Welfare state adepts and other such options make up more statist territory of the scale of statism.[3][4] Totalitarians prefer a maximum or all-encompassing state.[5][6]


  • State, society and individuals 1
  • Economic statism 2
    • State interventionism 2.1
    • State socialism 2.2
    • State capitalism 2.3
  • See also 3
  • References 4

State, society and individuals

Some analysts[7] use a dichotomy between state and

  1. ^ a b Levy, Jonah D (2006). The State After Statism: New State Activities in the Age of Liberalization. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. p. 469.  
    • Obadare, Ebenezer (2010). Statism, Youth, and Civic Imagination: A Critical Study of the National Youth Service Corps Programme in Nigeria. Dakar Senegal: Codesria.  
    • Kvistad, Gregg (1999). The Rise and Demise of German Statism: Loyalty and Political Membership. Providence [u.a.]: Berghahn Books.  
    • Bakunin, Mikhail (1990). Statism and Anarchy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.  
  2. ^ a b Machan, T (2002). "Anarchism and Minarchism: A Rapprochement". Journal Des Economistes et Des Etudes Humaines 12: 569–569–588.  
    • Block, W (2007). "Anarchism and Minarchism No Rapprochment Possible: Reply to Tibor Machan". The Journal of Libertarian Studies 21 (1): 61–61–90.  
    • Long, Roderick (2008). Anarchism Minarchism: Is a Government Part of a Free Country?. Aldershot, England: Ashgate.  
    • Parker, Martin (2010). The Dictionary of Alternatives Utopianism and Organisation. London, England: Zed.  
  3. ^ Friedrich, Carl (1974). Limited Government: a Comparison. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.  
  4. ^ Marx, Herbert (1950). The Welfare State. New York: Wilson. 
  5. ^ Arendt, Hannah (1966). The Origins of Totalitarianism. New York: Harcourt Brace & World. 
  6. ^ Cernak, Linda (2011). Totalitarianism. Edina, MN: ABDO.  
    • Friedrich, Carl (1964). Totalitarianism. New York: Grosset & Dunlap. 
    • Gleason, Abbott (1995). Totalitarianism. Oxford: Oxford University Press.  
    • Schapiro, Leonard (1972). Totalitarianism. New York: Praeger. 
  7. ^ Sampat, Mike (16 April 2013). "Logic and the case against Stiglitz". Toronto Star. Retrieved 28 April 2013. 
  8. ^ Timothy Mitchell (March 1991). "The Limits of the State: Beyond Statist Approaches and Their Critics".  
  9. ^ "authoritarian"., LLC. 9 October 2013. Retrieved 22 May 2015. 
  10. ^ West, Robin (1988). "The Authoritarian Impulse in Constitutional Law". Georgetown University Law Center. Retrieved 22 May 2015. 
  11. ^ a b Rocco, Alfredo (1926). "The Political Doctrine of Fascism". Carnegie Endowment For International Peace. Retrieved 22 May 2015. 
  12. ^ Jones, R. J. Barry. "STATISM." Routledge Encyclopedia of International Political Economy. 1st. Volume 3. New York, New York: Taylor & Francis, 2001. Print.
  13. ^ Michie, Jonathan (January 1, 2001). Reader’s Guide to the Social Sciences. Routledge. p. 1595.  
  14. ^ Bertrand Badie; Dirk Berg-Schlosser; Leonardo Morlino (2011). International Encyclopedia of Political Science. SAGE Publications, Inc. p. 2459.  
  15. ^ Leviathan in Business: Varieties of State Capitalism and Their Implications for Economic Performance, by Musacchio, Aldo. 2012.


See also

In some cases, state capitalism refers to economic policies such as dirigisme, which existed in France during the second half of the 20th century; and to the present-day economies of the People's Republic of China and Singapore, where the government owns controlling shares in publicly traded companies.[15] Some authors also define the former economies of the Eastern bloc as constituting a form of state capitalism.

Statism may be used to refer to state capitalism. State capitalism refers to forms of capitalism that feature high concentrations of state-owned commercial enterprises.

State capitalism

Politically, state socialism is often used to designate any socialist political ideology or movement that advocates for the use of state power for the construction of socialism, or to the belief that the state must be appropriated and used to ensure the success of a socialist revolution. It is usually used in reference to Marxist-Leninist socialists who champion a single-party state.

In some cases, when used in reference to Soviet-type economies, state socialism is used interchangeably with state capitalism[13] on the basis that the Soviet model of economics was actually based upon a process of state-directed capital accumulation and social hierarchy.[14]

State socialism broadly refers to forms of socialism based on state ownership of the means of production and state-directed allocation of resources. It is often used in reference to Soviet-type economic systems of former Communist states.

State socialism

The term statism is sometimes used to refer to market economies with large amounts of government intervention, regulation or influence over a market or mixed-market economy. Economic interventionism asserts that the state has a legitimate or necessary role within the framework of a capitalist economy by intervening in markets, attempting to promote economic growth and trying to enhance employment levels.

State interventionism

Economic statism promotes the view that the state has a major, necessary, and legitimate role in directing the economy, either directly through state-owned enterprises and other types of machinery of government, or indirectly through economic planning.[12]

Economic statism

[11] extol the moral position that the corporate group, usually the state, is greater than the sum of its parts and that individuals have a moral obligation to serve the state.corporatism and some forms of Fascism [11]


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