The Rise And Fall Of Socialism – 3-Hour Documentary Explores One Of The Most Powerful Political Ideas In History

It was the most powerful political idea in history.  A new faith for a skeptical age. It promised a world of harmony and abundance, if only property was shared by all and distributed equally. The idea was called socialism, and it spread farther and faster than any religion in history.

Then in almost the blink of an eye, it all collapsed. What happened?

This 3 hour series traces the rise and fall of an idea that changed the world. An idea that promised a heaven right here on earth.

Part 1:

This hour describes Robert Owen and early Utopian socialism before discussing the development of the Communist Manifesto by Marx and Engels. Attention turns Lenin and the Bolshevik Revolution, the American labor movement, and finishes with an examination of Canadian socialism



Part 2:

This hour focuses on revolutions in the 20th century, including the rise of Mussolini and the spread of communism in China. Focus turns to democratic socialism in Great Britain, the Kibbutz movement in Israel, and socialism in Tanzania. The hour ends with discussion about perceived failure of many of these movements.



Part 3:

This hour focuses on showing setbacks in established socialist/communist states, specifically in showing how capitalism has gained favoritism as the economic philosophy of formerly socialist states. The documentary ends with a return to the Kibbutz and discussion about how market forces have transformed the community.



Heaven on Earth: The Rise and Fall of Socialism (2005) is a three-hour PBS documentary film (sometimes recut as a 3 episodes documental mini-series) hosted by Ben Wattenberg and narrated by Henry Strozier. The series’ Executive Producer is Andrew Walworth. The series was produced for PBS by New River Media, Inc. (re-incorporated as Grace Creek Media, Inc. in 2008) and first broadcast as a special edition of the television series Think Tank in June 2005.

For further reading;

The rise and fall of socialism May 18, 2018


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