Reformist Marxism

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"The aim of all socialist measures, even of those which appear outwardly as coercive measures, is the development and the securing of a free personality. Their more exact examination always shows that the coercion included will raise the sum total of liberty in society, and will give more freedom over a more extended area than it takes away."[3]

Reformist Marxism, also called Evolutionary Socialism,[4] Marxist Social Democracy[5] or Bernsteinism is a type of Marxism which seeks to achieve communism through the use of reformist means. Reformist Marxism is the precursor of modern Democratic Socialism and Social Democracy.[6] Reformist Marxism today is practiced by the Japanese Communist Party.[7]



Flag of Reformist Marxism

Reformist Marxism has its origins in the writings of Eduard Bernstein, who, while identifying with Marxism, felt that there were significant errors in Marx's writing, and often criticized significant parts of Marxist theory such as the idea of revolution to achieve a socialist society. His work would prove influential to later Marxist revisionists and what would later come to be known as Social Democracy.


Flag of Reformist Marxism

Japanese Communism is an ideology based off of the Japanese Communist Party. It is a form of Marxism with major influences from Democratic Socialism and strong opposition to Neoconservatism in Japan and a focus on maintaining Japan's national sovereignty.

United Kingdom

The UK Labour Party was first formed on the 27th of February 1900 by the Labour Representation Committee (a pressure group that focused on workers' rights) and was initially socialist and the abolition of private property was included in the party's platform but by the 1940s, in accordance with many other socialist political parties in Europe, the abolishment of private property was dropped from their party platform and they swiftly won elections after this. However despite this moderation many groups within labour have still claimed Marxist and Bernsteinist traditions such as Bevan, Independant Labour and McDonnell these figures and party are often called in the UK "hard left" because of their often extreme beliefs. Bevan was characterised by his strong support for continuing the mass nationalisations post world war two despite the large debt that was piling up, and his opposition to Gaitskell's efforts to remove clause four from the labour party constitution (defining labour as a socialist party). Independent Labour was a separate party but often affiliated with labour throughout the early 20th century (disbanding in the 1970s) they refused to abandon their Marxist routes like the larger labour party, members included the famous writer George Orwell.

Starting under Harry Pollitt the Communist Party of Great Britain and its successor the Communist Party of Britain adopted a reformist stance of advocating for voting for the Labour Party. They, following the beliefs of Marx and Joseph Stalin, believe that socialism in the UK is possible through elections.


Eduard Bernstein argued that Marx had been wrong in his economic predictions, but right in his approach to social analysis. He observed capitalism was not failing, so the best path for the working class was to work within the political system to alleviate capitalism's failings. He believed that a worker's revolution required capitalism's collapse. That collapse was not forthcoming which left the working class to use political power to alleviate its own situation.


How to Draw


The main design of Reformist Marxism, Bernsteinism uses a variant of the Social Democracy design. The white rose on the red background is replaced with a gold rose on a red background, as to evoke communism.

  1. Draw a ball
  2. Fill it with red
  3. Draw a golden rose in the middle
  4. Add eyes and you're done!
Color Name HEX RGB
Red #CD0000 205, 0, 0
Gold #FFD800 255, 216, 0

Japanese Communism

Another alternate design Polcompballers use for Reformist Marxism is the design of Japanese Communist Party, or Japanese Communism for short.

  1. Draw a ball
  2. Fill it with red
  3. Add a silver gear in the middle
  4. Draw a golden wheat in the middle of the gear
  5. Add the eyes (preferably slanted)
  6. Add a tan straw hat to the ball and you’re done!
Color Name HEX RGB
Red #E3213C 227, 33, 60
Silver #BAE1E6 186, 225, 230
Gold #F5AD00 245, 173, 0




  • Marxism - You call yourself 'scientific' yet you oppose me for revising your theories. Don't you understand revision is the basis of science?
  • Libertarian Marxism - He goes on about how "the working class cannot use the existing state machinery to establish communism".
  • Syndicalism - Can be too revolutionary at times but trade unions are an essential part of establishing socialism.
  • Social Democracy - Son, what do you mean you just want restrained capitalism? Still much better than your failed child though.
  • Radicalism - Way too moderate and not scientific but we did form an electoral alliance in Britain way back.
  • Bourgeois Socialism - Could've been a good ally like the above but the time passed for that
  • Utopian Socialism - Contrary to what they say, I am not utopian but you are a pretty good ally all things considered.
  • Left-Wing Populism - Often detached from materialism and the workers like the above but some of you are good, I really like Socialist Alternative!
  • Gallowayism - He often simps for authright regimes and seemingly doesn't care for Marx but he is a socialist who competes in elections, so how bad can he be?
  • Spartacism - You abandoned my party and revolted against the Weimar Republic! Still, I will forever remember you as a great fighter for socialist cause.
  • Imperialism - Bringing civilization and progress to backward non-class-conscious peoples is based... but can you actually uplift and enlighten them instead of just exploiting them?
  • Libertarian Municipalism - Revolutionary ancom but I stand with Rojava against Western imperialism and Ba'athist tyranny!
  • Classical Social Democracy - While Marx's doctrine was indeed a great contribution to the proletarian movement, it must be revised.
  • Chavismo - You are technically a form of me but uhh, I always have considered myself "democratic" which you are certainly not.
  • Social Libertarianism- My grandson who seems to compromise with economic centrism but at least you are not like him...


  • De Leonism - Stop calling me evil!
  • Bismarckism - Got some right ideas, but I'll never forgive you for trying to suppress my party.
  • Showa-era Dictatorship - A bloodthirsty merciless conqueror, and a bloody hypocrite to boot!
  • Anti-Japaneseism - Believe it or not you can denounce Japanese imperialism without this insane racial self-hatred. Seriously, you're not well.
  • Third Way - I don't even recognize my own party anymore.
  • Sorelianism - Yes, I’m a political optimist, and? You’re just a psychopathic quasi-anarchist who has an obsession with violence.
  • Anarcho-Communism - You're just a bomb-throwing utopian, who thinks you can build socialism by destroying the only institution that can provide it.
  • Fiscal Conservatism - Damn you Gaitskell![8]
  • Classical Liberalism - Bourgeoisie thinking.
  • Social Liberalism - All you do is pacify the working class to take away support from real socialists!
  • Keynesian School - My biggest rival in the labour party Before we both became irrelevant
  • Green Liberalism - Sellout! Sellout!
  • Eco-Capitalism - Fake ecologist
  • Leninism - You claim to hate anarchists, yet your idea of destroying the bourgeois state is no different from theirs.
  • Trotskyism - You too, but you.'re worse than him because you're basically a red Neocon. Also screw permanent revolution.
  • Marxism-Leninism - F*ck off, Tankie! Also I'll never forgive you for what you did to Czechoslovakia!
  • Maoism - Your "cultural revolution" was nothing more than pure genocidal insanity!
  • Pol Potism - See? That's what I meant above!
  • Marxism-Leninism-Maoism - You too! Prachanda Path is extremely based though.
  • Italian Left Communism - You hated the United Front for bringing me in, you like authoritarianism, you hate revisionism, and your entire ideology revolves around a proletarian revolution. You're literally Leninism but worse!
  • Dengism - Communist in name only! The treatment of Hong Kong and Uyghurs have NOTHING to do with socialism!
  • Neoconservatism - I just wish you'd finally stop that militarization and leave Okinawa.
  • Lassallism - Too authoritarian and deviates from true socialism.
  • Impossibilism - No, it's possible to peacefully reform capitalism!

Further Information






  1. Revising the theories of Marx to be more humane isn't Humanist, that was a misconception rooted back to Dubček's reforms. To Orthodox Marxists, human emancipation within Communism is equal to Humanistic society
  2. M. Hrushevsky was a founder of Greater Ukraine idea.
  3. Evolutionary Socialism, Chapter 3
  4. Evolutionary Socialism (1899), Eduard Bernstein
  5. Lenin Rediscovered: What Is to Be Done? in Context, pdf p.495 and pdf p.660 by Lars T. Lih
  6. The Quest for Evolutionary Socialism: Eduard Bernstein and Social Democracy by Manfred B. Steger
  7. How the Japanese Communist Party Developed Its Theory of Scientific Socialism by Tetsuzo Fuwa
  8. Gaitsekll and Attlee cut NHS funding and remove free spectacles and dentistry in order to raise military spending for the Korean war