Primitive Communism: Definition, Features, Pros & Cons

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Primitive Communism

Primitive Communism
Primitive Communism

The primitive mode of production or primitive communism is one of the ways in which the way of organizing the production of goods and services in an economy can be presented. This theory was developed by Karl Marx, who classified history in different modes of production in chronological order.

Primitive communism, in this sense, is one of the different ways in which the production of goods and services is organized in an economy. But what is primitive communism?

According to Karl Marx, history has a chronology through which a series of different modes of production have passed. All of them, based on the productive forces and the relations of production. Primitive communism refers to the mode of production of the first of the various stages of political and social organization of humanity.

Primitive communism, defined by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, appears with the first primitive societies around 7,000 BC.

Features of Primitive Communism

Among the characteristics that define primitive communism we can highlight the following:

  • It is based on the first civilizations in history. That is, primitive human societies.
  • Their way of organizing is in tribes.
  • It is made up of different groups, which divide the work dedicated to obtaining a livelihood.
  • It was based on subsistence economies.
  • The members exchanged goods based on cooperativism.
  • Property as such did not exist.

These characteristics, collected here, summarize the principles that Marx used to define the mode of production of primitive communism.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Primitive Communism

Among the advantages and disadvantages of primitive communism, the following should be highlighted:

Advantages of Primitive Communism

  • There were no political hierarchies.
  • There were no situations of labor exploitation.
  • There was continuous cooperation between humans.
  • A clean and responsible society with the environment.

Disadvantages of Primitive Communism

  • Subsistence economy.
  • System focused on survival.
  • Very low level of development.
  • Very low and simple living standards.
  • There was no social development.

Thus, we could conclude that it is a system that, as its name indicates, refers to a very underdeveloped stage in history.

Timeline of Modes of Production

According to Karl Marx, the modes of production have followed one another throughout history. In this sense, as we said before, new ways of organizing economic activity have been developed, which in chronological order are:

  • Primitive communism
  • Asian mode of production
  • Slave production mode
  • Feudal mode of production
  • Capitalist mode of production
  • Socialist mode of production

For Marx, the socialist system was the ultimate system.

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