Socialism Reconsidered: A View from Yugoslavia

Socialism Reconsidered: A View from Yugoslavia

When queried by the New York Times‘ John Oakes, Milovan Djilas, age 71, readily conceded that “Socialism is not so clear to me today as when I was young.” It is an appealing feature of the Yugoslav version of communism that it is possible for good Communists to question the central arrangements of the Yugoslav state and economy. The latest example of such a reexamination is a major study by Branko Horvat, Yugoslavia’s best-known economist in the Western world. Horvat, a resident in good standing of his own country, nevertheless is able to treat critically the Yugoslav experiment in a self-managed economy.

Branko Horvat combines rare mastery of Marxist and bourgeois social thought. He has actively participated in formulating the theory and practice of his country’s continuing experiment in worker self-management. His is no recent faith: “Ever since my class left the secondary school of a small provincial town in Croatia to join the partisans in the Yugoslav Revolution, socialism has been my predominant concern.”

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Lima