Student Lecturer Course Date Political Anthropology: personal wealth in socialist and post socialist countries. Political Anthropology refers to the study of humanity in relation to political systems and societal structures. The onset of political anthropology is the nineteenth century and was led by Lewis Morgan and Sir Henry Maine who traced the evolution of human society on what would be later referred to as ethnocentric, speculative and racist approaches as indicated in African Political Systems (1940)…
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But according to Political Systems of Highland Burma (1954) there is need for understanding the transformation of societies at different times. With a totally different view was Gluckman who said that conflict maintained the stability of political systems through the establishment and re-establishment of crosscutting ties among social actors. He said that a society can be upheld by a conflict so long as the conflict is of a certain degree. In the United States political anthropology was approached on Marxist ideologies which called for an understanding of the origin and development of inequalities in human society. The ideas was also shared in France in the 1960s. In 1970s, Europe became victim of political anthropology when its edifying structures became issue of study (Boissevain and Friedl, 1975). The civilized Europe’s norms and political course with anthropology as explained (Haarmann, 1996) continued to take a different direction with different anthropologists taking a u-turn in their ethnographies by turning to cultural/political identity construction, ethnicity and nationalism (Barth 1969 and anticipated Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism). PRE-SOCIALIST, SOCIALIST AND POST-SOCIALIST TIMES Socialism is the transitional state between the overthrow of capitalism and realism of communism (Marxist theory). It was the French Revolution of 1978 which was as a result of Industrial Revolution that gave birth to socialism. Karl Marx and Eagle’s conception of socialism in their Communist Manifesto resulted into formation of social democratic parties in Europe drawing from Marxism with the Australian Labor Party being the first to get into government. The Soviet Union and other communist parties employed the Soviet model of economic development thus creating planned economies run by the state owner of the means of production like in United Kingdom; the public directed all that it owned. The long Vietnam War (1959-1975) forced some countries to go on their own and formed the New Left and pushed for decentralized collective ownership through cooperatives and councils for workers. Goods and services were produced directly for thus eliminated the market-induced needs bringing about enough demand for products to be sold at a profit. This socialist economy allowed for self-management and self-governance of enterprise activities with equal power relations, hence, maximized occupational autonomy. Every member of the hierarchy was involved in the decision-making process and participated fully in establishing the overall policy objectives. However, some socialist states had bureaucratic economies where the micromanagement of a worker at workplace was based on scientific management which is capitalistic in nature. During the post-socialist times like in East and Central Europe, there were restructuring processes that took place. The urban housing sector is faced with problems of affordability, communal housing is marginalized, and
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