Socialism as quoted by Julius Nyerere as “the attitude of the mind” and often defined as a system of social organizations producing and distributing goods that are owned collectively or by a centralized government that often plans and controls the economy. In a socialistic society it is the attitude of mind, and not the rigid adherence to a standard political pattern, which is needed to ensure that the people care for each other’s welfare. In order to understand African socialism better we need to clearly understand how a society operates.
In a socialist society the means of production are owned by the workers rather than by a rich minority of capitalists or functionaries. Such a system of ownership is both collective and individual in nature. Socialism will not be a utopia simply created in people’s minds. It will be the product of economic and social development. Now African socialism is a belief in sharing economic resources in the “traditional” African way.
Many African politicians supported the “traditional” African way that is often referred as African Socialism. Julius K. Nyerere who was one of them who later became the President of Tanganyika (East Africa) in 1962 and was President of Tanzania (Tanganyika and Zanzibar) from 1964 to 1985. A Socialist and Pan-Africanist, was a force for moderation and racial harmony. He worked in close cooperation with the British authorities in his homeland. However, advocates of African socialism claimed that it was not the opposite of capitalism or a response to it, but something completely different. They claimed their socialism was merely recapturing the spirit of what it was to be African.
Many believed that Africa was far behind capitalist states in terms of economic development and to compete fairly with them they needed a different appeal to unite them. German economist Werner Sombart in 1906, in his definition of American Capitalism stated, “America is the Canaan of capitalism, its promised land. ” Capitalism is regarded as an economic system distinguished by private ownership of the means of production and the production of commodities for sale. The modern business corporation is an original creation of the American imagination.
It was first fashioned to extend local markets, then, it became an indispensable means to create a national market. Both American industrialization and capitalism were crucially dependent upon the corporate form of organization. Thus arising a political process whereby economic power can become translated into governmental policy. American capitalists had almost a free hand in gaining control of a country unimaginably rich in natural resources. In straight-out contests of strength with both organized and unorganized workers American capitalists usually triumphed.
The very philosophy of individualism facilitated the adoption of slavery in the American history. President, Nyerere had to steer a difficult course by the late 1960s Tanzania was one of the world’s poorest countries. Like many others it was suffering from a severe foreign debt burden, a decrease in foreign aid, and a fall in the price of commodities. The objective of socialism in the United Republic of Tanzania is to build a society in which all members have equal rights and equal opportunities, in which all can live in peace with their neighbors without suffering or imposing injustice, being exploited, or exploiting.
The nature of Tanzanian society was on rural development. People were encouraged (sometimes forced) to live and work on a co-operative basis in organized villages or ujamaa (meaning ‘family hood’ in Kishwahili). It is important to realize that the policy of ujamaa Vijijini is not intended to be merely a revival of the old settlement schemes under another name. The Ujamaa village is a new conception; “Understanding that what we need to develop is people, not things, and that people can only develop themselves.
” Ujamaa villages are intended to be socialist organizations created by the people, and governed by those who live and work in them. They cannot be created from outside, nor governed from outside. No one can be forced into an Ujamaa village, and no official at any level can go and tell the members of an Ujamaa village what they should do together, and what they should continue to do as individual farmers. According to Julius Kambarage Nyerere “I have said that a millionaire can be a good socialist.
But a socialist millionaire is a rare phenomenon. Indeed he is almost a contradiction in terms. The appearance of millionaires in any society is no proof of its affluence; they can be produced by very poor countries like Tanganyika just as well as by rich countries like the United States of America. ” He also goes on to say that a millionaire can be a socialist; he may value his wealth only because it can be used in the service of his fellow men. But the man who uses wealth for the purpose of dominating any of his fellows is a capitalist.
On the other hand the white population of the U. S. A. descended from European immigrants who, most energetic and independent elements of their peoples, crossed the ocean to escape oppression, persecution and poverty. From the first settlements on the Eastern coast, with its commercial towns, they gradually expanded over the entire continent, exterminating in continuous fight the Indian natives, clearing the forests, subduing the wilderness, and converting it into cultivated land.
American capital soon played the chief role in opening up the Western wilds by digging canals and building railways. Through its friends in Congress it was rewarded for this service to the nation with big allotments for exploitation, paying not more than the bribes, the form by which the politicians got their share of the profits. Founded on the principles of individual liberty and self-determination the nascent United States provided fertile ground for the seeds of Capitalism.
Conditions such as slavery, explosive growth in the number of banks, America’s powerful drive to expand its territory, neutral trade during the war between Great Britain and France, and ultimately, the Industrial Revolution enabled American Capitalism to grow into a thriving jungle. Ayn Rand, a Russian-born, American novelist and philosopher says,” America’s abundance was created not by public sacrifices to the common good, but by the productive genius of free men who pursued their own personal interests and the making of their own private fortunes. “
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Julius Nyerere & African Socialism. (2017, Apr 03). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/julius-nyerere-african-socialism-essay