The *ISMs

A quote from The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists written in 1914. “Don’t think about Socialism or any other- “ism.” Concentrate your mind on getting money…”

It appears that consumerism is only one of a group of words that appear to be related, either because there is a direct connection between them or because they are opposites and therefore always talked about at the same time.

This page provides links to definitions of each word. I created pages instead of posts as I fully expect that my journey see my understanding and the definitions evolve. The pages will also be a useful place to gather examples and comments about the ISMs.

  • Communism
  • Fascism
  • Capitalism
  • Consumerism
  • Socialism
  • Marxism
  • Totalitarianism (thanks Mike)

Non-ISMs that are allowed on the page because they are strongly related

  • Maybe Ethics, but that is one BIG subject.
  • Sustainability. I originally named this “Ecology”, but sustainability is a better fit, suggesting that we humans conduct ourselves in a way that is considerate.

I am also pretty sure that all these related and opposite words fit together. I feel like there will be a diagram here at some point? Until then, dear friends, here is a load of words…

  • Socialism leads to Fascism, although I really do need to understand what fascism is a lot more than I currently do.
  • Fascism leads to Communism, or at least sits beside it.
  • Consumerism is an addictive function of Capitalism (we buy shiny things.)
  • we need conscientious consumerism. buy what you need and make sure it is made with ethical standards.
  • ethics and its relationship to consumerism and the ecological issues
  • We need to be very aware of the ecological changes that we are making. Consuming less and by definition trying to sell less useless stuff, goes hand in hand with living more thoughtful lives. I’m also pretty sure that there is some ethical relationship between the way that we should act and the impact that we have.
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