The Incas and Socialism During the history of early America, one of the most well-known peoples of South America were the Incas. The Inca Empire was one of the most advanced in America when the Spanish began exploring the Pacific coast of South America in the 1520s. One must imagine the shock of the Spanish Conquistadores lead by Francisco Pizarro when they marched into Incan towns and cities. Incan language, culture, technology, and social structure was very unique and very different from their own. Even today, modern historians find it difficult to place the Inca into a specific political and economic system. The dominant thinking by historians such as George Murdock in the 20th Century is that the
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It has its roots in the mid-19th Century when Karl Marx wrote The Communist Manifesto in 1848. Marx believed that socialism would be the first goal in achieving communism. (Almost Everyone's Guide to Economics, Galibraith & Salinger 21) Though socialism has been attempted in countries such as the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and Cuba, socialist states have problems staying true to socialism's basic principles. Good examples would be the USSR and North Korea, which have been criticized for being police states. Mainly, what has emerged as a working version of socialism is Democratic Socialism. Democratic Socialism is a system where a government provides social and economic safety nets for its people while regulating for the excesses of capitalism. Countries that have applied democratic socialism are mostly in Scandanavia such as Denmark and Sweden. (Economics 42) This is the most common form of socialism in the western world. The first record of the Inca as a significant power begins in 1438 when the Incan leader Yupanqui defeated the Incas fierce enemy the Chanca. This event marks the beginning of the Inca Empire. (The Inca Empire Nishi 9) For the next 50 years the Inca were in a golden age of expansion with new tribes being captured and assimilated into the empire. (Nishi 9) In time, the Inca would control most of the Andes through a well-disciplined military and highly advanced road system.