Political Typology Project
There is much more to this than the following charts, but these are fundamental.Picture quality is less than optimal inasmuch as each visual is a literal exampleof cut and paste –with actual paper and actual cutting and pasting of labels.
For optimal viewing it is advisable to open up your e-mail window,that is, make it “taller” than usual by using the blue bar at the top of thewindow to expand its size.
The Basic Chart shows the system of classification in its simplest form.All charts in this series use this schema. There are four categories, each ofwhich allow subdivisions into further developments of the idea. There areabsolutely no value judgements built into the chart, this is intended tobe an objective display showing how different political philosophiesrelate to each other.
Using the preceding chart a variety of real-world political systems are shownin a hopefully accurate location in the visual. Here some subjectivity maywell have crept in. Is Trotskyism really as close to Menshevism asindicated ? In retrospect this may not be the case. And at least someversions of “Socialism of the Chair” ( aka Academic Socialism ) deserve tobe positioned closer to the center of the Socialist Revisionist box.And so forth. Still, this chart ought to be useful enough.
There are a number of different ways to be a Centrist. The following chartattempts to classify these different philosophies of the political “middle.”Again, despite my attempts to be clinically objective, in retrospectsome positioning can be questioned, especially Gramscismbeing as close to the center as is shown, which I now object tomyself –but this chart was done maybe 2 years ago even ifit is only being circulated now. Similarly, Technocracy, whilenow pretty much a defunct movement, might better be shownfurther to the Right. And so forth. But at least here is a typologyof Centrism which can be worked with which, until now,we have not had.
The organizing principle of the very first chart is here used to break outtypes of Libertarianism. If there are problems with the terminologyor positioning of philosophies, feel free to offer criticisms orsuggestions ; this is a working model, not the Last Word.
Since I personally object –strongly– to characterization of “Socialism”in terms that Marxists make use of, here is my take on non-Marxist Socialism.Given the great influence Marx had on the Left generally in the 20th centuryit cannot be denied that there was spillover into some of these categoriesalong the way, but this schema shows an idealized non-Marxist picture.Or mostly non-Marxist ; the category “Social Democracy” includesRevisionist Socialists of the Auguste Bebel and Eduard Bernsteinpersuasion of Weimar Germany, for instance, or for Fabian Socialismof the Webbs and GB Shaw in the first decades of the 20th century.This kind of Revisionism , while not post-Marx, was a major stepin this direction even if it was not followed-up on later.
Most of these groups –or the philosophies on which they are based–today are small scale, but this was hardly true in the past and for a timeit was thinkable that one or another non-Marxist form of Socialismmight have become dominant in some locations.
A variant of Saint-Simonianism did, in fact, become very important in Brazilin the late 19th century / early 20th century, Auguste Comte’s Positivism( as it was called ), and hence his motto is still on the flag of Brazil,“Order and Progress.” Guild Socialism once was dominant in Britainas “pure” Saint-Simonianism was in the France of the 2nd Empire forits first ten years, anyhow.
The chart system allows for a wide variety of classifications, for example,for historical political systems, such that Mercantilism can be shown in avariant visual, as can Constitutional Monarchy, different kinds of Theocracy,different types of despotisms ( handy for Latin America or parts of Asia ),and so on.