What is the Revolutionary Communist Party?

Jason C. Chavis

Formed in the United States in 1975, the Revolutionary Communist Party is a political party based on the fundamentals of establishing a Communist revolution in the US to help end the country's imperialistic ways. The political ideology is reminiscent of other nations' Communist parties of the past, particularly the United Kingdom. It also shares a name with smaller organizations situated throughout the world in countries like Chile, Peru, Brazil, Spain and Turkey. As one of the many American political parties without a strong position in national discourse, the Revolutionary Communist Party generally maintains a position on the fringe of the US left.

Sculpture of Karl Marx (foreground) and Friedrich Engels.
Sculpture of Karl Marx (foreground) and Friedrich Engels.

The party was built from various factions of other groups from the 1960s and 1970s, particularly those associated with the New Left movement in the US and United Kingdom. Its fundamentals are based on the teachings of early Communist philosophers, particularly Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin. The Revolutionary Communist Party has also adopted many principles from Maoism. Much of the policy positions of the party are aligned with what society considered the Hippie movement of the period, including the Revolutionary Youth Movement and the Students for a Democratic Society, campus-based youth activist organizations.

Russian leader Vladimir Lenin was a major influence on the Revolutionary Communist Party.
Russian leader Vladimir Lenin was a major influence on the Revolutionary Communist Party.

As a more militarized version of US Communism, the Revolutionary Communist Party promotes an agenda of rebellion to achieve its goals. It has the party-line opinion that the US is responsible for a large amount of genocide and slavery in both its past and present. To achieve its goals, it believes that a revolution must take place within the nation to dismantle what it views as American imperialism and capitalism.

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The Revolutionary Communist Party also promotes a resistance to the election process of the nation. It often promotes candidates that most likely will not win office, but uses the publicity to attain goals of spreading information. In the past, it has worked closely with Reverend Jesse Jackson's Rainbow Coalition, particularly during the candidate's 1984 and 1988 bids for the presidency.

Other countries also support similar parties, many of which share the name with the organization. In the United Kingdom, the Revolutionary Communist Party was established in 1978 and focused on a Trotskyist mentality that slowly developed into Marxism. Other countries have supported similar parties, but most have disbanded over the years. One of the major challenges for these groups is the fact that many members have different positions on certain philosophies, resulting in splits into various factions on a regular basis.

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Discussion Comments


While there has been a lot in the news lately about the increasingly dire situation with the average American worker, I don't think the kind of revolution being advocated by any communist revolutionary party is very feasible.

Most communist revolutions took place in countries that had become very weak and unstable, often due to the consequences of war that America has not really had to deal with. The defunct Communist Party of Great Britain had only a bit of success, and the UK's decline as a world power was much more dramatic than anything the USA has gone through to date.

What do you think about the future of communism in America?


When I was in university the campus had about four different communist clubs that students could join. I got the feeling that a lot of these different communist factions are like branches of the same religion, in that they may have differences that are important to those within the organization but they all look virtually identical to outsiders.

I am pretty certain that there must have been an American communist party prior to the one discussed in the post which was founded in 1975. Can anyone outline the different communist parties in the USA's past and how they differ from one another?

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