A Third Way
A Third Way
This chapter examines Erich Fromm’s so-called third way as a democratic socialist alternative to Western capitalism and what he called Soviet “managerialism.” Fromm equated democratic socialism with “humanism”: the freedom of each individual, when sustained by society, to pursue a life of creative labor and happiness. Fromm thought that nonaligned “third force” countries had the greatest potential to travel down this path. Fromm was swayed by a plan proposed in 1960 by Karl Polanyi for enlisting the support of a coalition of politically concerned intellectuals who would reinforce one another’s resources and ideas. With this group in mind, Fromm collaborated with Clara Urquhart to publish a new international journal, Humanist Studies, that would feature critical essays from scholars who believed that “the alternative between Western capitalism and Communist Khrushchevism is humanist socialism.” This chapter also considers Fromm’s 1965 book, Socialist Humanism: An International Symposium, dedicated to his second cousin, Heinz Brandt.
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