Communism Without an Unemployment Taboo
DOI link for Communism Without an Unemployment Taboo
Communism Without an Unemployment Taboo book
This chapter demonstrates how policies increasingly encouraged continuous full-time wage-earning in large, state-owned industrial enterprises. It reviews the pre-war political experience with unemployment, with particular attention to the Communist Party's positions and activities regarding unemployment. The chapter examines how the Party's thinking about unemployment after the War was deeply influenced by Soviet concepts and pressures to imitate the USSR. It shows how the lack of concern for unemployment was reinforced by the tasks of post-war reconstruction, the ideology of state socialism, and the strategy for rapid industrialization. Unemployment became an unthinkable political taboo under communism. The largely undercover Communists used their more militant stance against unemployment as a way to differentiate themselves from their more compromising compatriots, even though they advocated similar policies for relief and training. Communist leaflets called for state unemployment relief with payment adjusted by family size. State propaganda urged women to serve Communism by bearing more children and entering the labor force when they could.