Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Revolutionary Communist Party

New Programme and New Constitution of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA

(Drafts for Discussion)


The dominant social relations in this society perfectly mirror the economic relations–exploitative. In particular, even the working class man, infected with the dominant bourgeois ideology and frustrated with his role in capitalist society, often plays the role of the bourgeois inside his own home in relation to his wife and children.

The proletarian revolution will change all that, through a prolonged process of struggle involving both men and women and including the children.

Politically the proletariat will seek to unleash the fury of women as a mighty force for revolution. The seizure of power by the proletariat will require this and, as Lenin put it, a measure of the thoroughness (and thus success) of any revolution is the degree to which it mobilizes and emancipates women. Showing his awestruck terror at the powerful role of women in the historic Paris Commune of 1871, the first proletarian revolution, a bourgeois commentator of the time exclaimed, “If the French nation were a nation of women, what a terrible nation it would be.” This, the proletariat certainly cannot fail to grasp much more deeply than any bourgeois–and to act upon in a way the bourgeoisie never can or would.

Upon coming to power, the proletariat will carry forward the struggle to break the chains which hold back women from a full role in society, and thereby hold back the proletariat itself from completely transforming society. There will be an immediate ban on discrimination of any kind, including against women, in work and pay as well as every other sphere in society, and at the same time special measures will be taken that take into account the particular problems–such as pregnancy–that affect working women. Birth control will be encouraged, thus combatting the tendency for unwanted pregnancy to force women who are struggling to break out of the confines of the home back into it. Attention will be paid to developing other methods of birth control in place of present ones which endanger women. The right to abortion will be guaranteed, and the capitalist policy of forced sterilization, directed particularly against women of the oppressed nationalities, will be stopped.

In order to further free the women from the narrow confines of household work, men must not only be struggled with to equally share the burden, but the proletariat will work step by step to establish and involve men and women alike in various institutions like collective laundries, kitchens and child care centers which will promote the gradual socialization of the task of raising children.

As far as the policy toward the family, it will be recognized for what it is: not some holy or sacred institution to be preserved for all time, but on the other hand an institution, that even under socialism, generally corresponds to the level of society, because of the fact that for some time there will still be remnants of capitalism including the need for commodity exchange, wages, etc., and for obtaining the bulk of necessities and many social services through this means. For this reason, the family will still play an important role in raising children. But not only will the family be a secondary form–even more so than under capitalism–for determining their upbringing, but its influence in promoting conservatism among its members, especially the women and children, will be actively combatted. Their attention and energy will be focused on the broader questions and movements in society.

The right of divorce will be upheld–not to promote divorce, for in fact divorce will become less common than under capitalism–but to strengthen the free and voluntary character of marriage relations and relations between men and women in general. While the parents will still have significant responsibility for their children, this does not mean they are “theirs” and there will be struggle to prevent parents from imposing old values, and conservative, non-revolutionary thinking generally on the children.

The struggle around the woman question will not be confined to any one sphere, but will go on throughout all of society. Revolution is impossible without the constant breaking with old ideas and old institutions, and the practices and values which promote the oppression of women are a key prop of the old; they must be a key target of the proletariat in destroying the old and creating the new. In any sphere, from employment to literature and art, this question will be raised and will be the source of ongoing struggle in order to ensure the full participation of women in the socialist society and the ongoing proletarian revolution and thereby immensely strengthen that revolution.