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Essays on Capitalism

Capitalism and socialism essay topics and outline examples.

  • The Evolution of Capitalism: From Its Origins to Modern Day
  • Capitalism and Its Role in Promoting Innovation and Technology
  • The Ethics of Capitalism: Exploring Moral Considerations in Free Markets
  • Global Capitalism: Its Impact on Developing Economies
  • The Relationship Between Capitalism and Environmental Sustainability
  • Consumer Culture in Capitalist Societies: Implications and Critiques
  • The Role of Government Regulation in Capitalist Economies
  • Capitalism in the USA 1900-1940: A Historical Overview
  • Capitalism vs. Socialism: Impact on Income Inequality
  • The Impact of Capitalism on Underdevelopment in the Global South

Essay Title 1: Capitalism vs. Socialism: A Comparative Analysis of Economic Systems and Their Impacts

Thesis Statement: This argumentative essay critically evaluates capitalism and socialism as economic systems, analyzing their strengths, weaknesses, and societal consequences, and seeks to determine which system provides a more equitable and sustainable future.

  • Introduction
  • Capitalism: Market-Based Economy, Private Ownership, and Competition
  • Socialism: Collective Ownership, Wealth Redistribution, and Government Control
  • Economic Inequality: Wealth Disparities in Capitalist Societies
  • Social Safety Nets: Welfare Programs and Social Services in Socialist Societies
  • Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Capitalism's Role in Technological Advancements
  • Environmental Sustainability: Examining the Impact of Both Systems on the Planet
  • Conclusion: Striving for a Balanced Economic System that Addresses Inequities

Essay Title 2: The Role of Capitalism and Socialism in Modern Societies: Achieving Economic Prosperity and Social Equity

Thesis Statement: This argumentative essay explores the coexistence of capitalism and socialism within modern societies, emphasizing the potential benefits of a mixed economic system that combines market forces with social welfare measures to achieve economic prosperity and social equity.

  • Mixed Economy: Combining Capitalist and Socialist Elements
  • Income Redistribution: Progressive Taxation and Social Programs
  • Healthcare and Education: Ensuring Universal Access and Quality
  • Worker Rights: Labor Unions and Employment Protections
  • Regulation and Competition: Balancing Market Dynamics and Consumer Protection
  • Global Perspectives: Comparing Economic Systems in Different Countries
  • Conclusion: Advancing Economic Prosperity and Social Equity Through a Balanced Approach

Essay Title 3: Capitalism, Socialism, and the Future of Economic Systems: Toward a More Equitable and Sustainable World

Thesis Statement: This argumentative essay envisions the future of economic systems, proposing the development of innovative models that incorporate the best aspects of both capitalism and socialism to create a more equitable, sustainable, and just global economy.

  • Hybrid Models: Exploring Economic Systems That Promote Equity and Innovation
  • Environmental Responsibility: Addressing Climate Change and Resource Conservation
  • Global Wealth Distribution: Reducing Income Disparities Across Nations
  • Education and Healthcare: Ensuring Access and Quality Worldwide
  • Technology and Automation: Adapting to the Changing Nature of Work
  • Collaborative Governance: International Cooperation for Economic Reform
  • Conclusion: Striving for a New Economic Paradigm for a Better World

Essay on Capitalism and Communism

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Mercantilism Vs Capitalism

Capitalism in today's society , review of the reasons why capitalism is bad for the poor, the philosophy of capitalism, let us write you an essay from scratch.

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Pros and Cons of How Capitalism and Consumerism Play Role in One’s Destiny

Comparison of the economic systems in communism and capitalism, significant impacts underlying in the capitalism market structure, the origins and development of capitalism, get a personalized essay in under 3 hours.

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The Solution to Poverty in India: Socialism Or Capitalism

The concept of alienation, the concept of social class in capitalist reality, a theme of global capitalism in vermeer’s hat by timothy brook and slave ship by marcus rediker, marx’s theory of commodity fetishism, new europe: the case of the city in smith’s view, what is pink capitalism and its representation in giovanni’s room, capitalism in sherwood anderson’s "mother", "capitalism: a love story": summary, comparison of free enterprise and communism, racism and capitalism in japan, depiction of industrial capitalism in the film modern times, the concept of alienation in the works of karl marx, why hawaii is not quite paradise, jay gould: one of the robber barons and captains of industry, the complex relationship between capitalism and poverty, socialism vs. capitalism: a comparative analysis, socialism and capitalism, how the columbian exchange benefited europe and north america, why is capitalism better than communism.

Capitalism is an economic system based on the private ownership of the means of production and their operation for profit.

Central characteristics of capitalism include capital accumulation, competitive markets, price system, private property, property rights recognition, voluntary exchange, and wage labor.

Main types of capitalism include advanced capitalism, corporate capitalism, finance capitalism, free-market capitalism, mercantilism, social capitalism, state capitalism and welfare capitalism. Other variants of capitalism include anarcho-capitalism, community capitalism, humanistic capitalism, neo-capitalism, state monopoly capitalism, and technocapitalism.

Singapore, New Zealand, Australia, Switzerland, Ireland, Taiwan, United Kingdom, Estonia, Canada, Denmark, etc.

Capitalism is driven by the law of supply and demand. In a capitalist society people have more freedom to choose their career paths. Countries that have capitalist economies today are not 100% capitalist. This is because they all have some form of government regulation to guide business.

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  • Unemployment
  • Penny Debate
  • Universal Basic Income
  • Minimum Wage
  • American Dream
  • Supply and Demand
  • Real Estate
  • Macroeconomics

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capitalism essay 300 words

1000-Word Philosophy: An Introductory Anthology

1000-Word Philosophy: An Introductory Anthology

Philosophy, One Thousand Words at a Time

Arguments for Capitalism and Socialism

Author: Thomas Metcalf Category: Social and Political Philosophy Wordcount: 993

Editor’s Note: This essay is the second in a two-part series authored by Tom on the topic of capitalism and socialism. The first essay, on defining capitalism and socialism, is available here .

Listen here

Suppose I had a magic wand that allowed one to produce 500 donuts per hour. I say to you, “Let’s make a deal. You use this wand to produce donuts, and then sell those donuts for $500 and give me the proceeds. I’ll give you $10 for every hour you spend doing this. I’ll spend that time playing video games.”

My activity—playing video games—seems pretty easy. Your job requires much more effort. And I might end up with a lot more money than $10 for every hour you work. How is that fair?

In the story, the magic wand is analogous to capital goods : assets (typically machinery and buildings, such as robots, sewing machines, computers, and factories) that make labor, or providing goods and services, more productive. Standard definitions of ‘capitalism’ and ‘socialism’ indicate that, in general, capitalist systems permit people to privately own and control capital goods, whereas socialist systems do not. And capitalist systems tend to contain widespread wage labor, absentee ownership, and property income; socialist systems generally don’t. [1]

Capital goods are morally interesting. As in the case of the magic wand, ownership of capital goods can allow one to make lots of money without working. In contrast, other people have to work for a living. This might be unfair or harmful. This essay surveys and explains the main arguments in this debate. [2]

Commercial donut manufacturing.

1. Capitalism

Arguments for capitalism tend to hold that it’s beneficial to society for there to be incentives to produce, own, and use capital goods like the magic wand, or that it’s wrong to forcibly prevent people from doing so. Here are four arguments for capitalism, stated briefly:

(1) Competition: ‘When individuals compete with each other for profits, this benefits the consumer.’ [3]

Critique : Competition also may encourage selfish and predatory behavior. Competition can also occur in some socialist systems. [4]

(2) Freedom: ‘Preventing people from owning capital restricts their freedom. Seizing their income in the form of taxes may constitute theft.’ [5]

Critiques : Maybe owning property, itself, restricts freedom, by excluding others from using it. [6] If I announce that I own something, I may be thereby announcing that I will force you not to use it. And maybe “freedom” requires the ability to pursue one’s own goals, which in turn requires some amount of wealth. [7] Further, if people must choose between work and starvation, then their choice to work may not be really “free” anyway. [8] And the general distribution of wealth is arguably the result of a morally arbitrary “natural lottery,” [9] which may not actually confer strict property-rights over one’s holdings. [10] I didn’t choose where I was born, nor my parents’ wealth, nor my natural talents, which allow me to acquire wealth. So perhaps it’s not a violation of my rights to take some of that property from me.

(3) Public Goods: [11] ‘When objects, including capital, must be shared with others, then no one is strongly motivated to produce them. In turn, society is poorer and labor is more difficult because production is inefficient.’ [12]

Critique : People might be motivated to produce capital for altruistic reasons, [13] or may be coerced in some socialist systems to do so. Some putatively socialist systems allow for profitable production of capital goods. [14]

  (4) Tragedy of the Commons: ‘When capital, natural resources, or the environment are publicly controlled, no one is strongly motivated to protect them.’ [15]

Critique : As before, people might be motivated by altruism. [16] Some systems with partially-private control of capital may nevertheless qualify as socialist. [17]

2. Socialism

Arguments for socialism tend to hold that it’s unfair or harmful to have a system like in the story of the magic wand, a system with widespread wage labor and property income. Here are four arguments for socialism, stated briefly:

(1) Fairness: ‘It’s unfair to make money just by owning capital, as is possible only in a capitalist system.’ [18]

Critique : Perhaps fairness isn’t as morally important as consent, freedom, property rights, or beneficial consequences. And perhaps wage laborers consent to work, and capital owners have property rights over their capital. [19]

(2) Inequality: ‘When people can privately own capital, they can use it to get even richer relative to the poor, and the wage laborers are left poorer and poorer relative to the rich, thereby worsening the inequality that already exists between capital-owners and wage-laborers.’ [20]

Critiques : This is a disputable empirical claim. [21] And perhaps the ability to privately own capital encourages people to invest in building capital goods, thereby making goods and services cheaper. Further, perhaps monopolies commonly granted by social control over capital are “captured” by wealthy special-interests, [22] which harm the poor by enacting regressive laws. [23]

(3) Labor: ‘Wage laborers are alienated from their labor, exploited, and unfree because they must obey their bosses’ orders.’ [24]

Critiques : If this alienation and exploitation are net-harmful to workers, then why do workers consent to work? If the answer is ‘because they’ll suffer severe hardship otherwise,’ then strictly speaking, this is a critique of allowing poverty, not a critique of allowing wage labor.

(4) Selfishness: ‘When people can privately own capital, they selfishly pursue profit above all else, which leads to further inequality, environmental degradation, non-productive industries, economic instability, colonialism, mass murder, and slavery.’

Critique : These are also disputable empirical claims. Maybe when people are given control over socially -owned capital, they selfishly extract personal wealth from it. [25] Maybe when the environment is socially controlled, everyone is individually motivated to over-harvest and pollute. [26] State intervention in the economy may be a major cause of the existence of non-productive industry, pollution, and economic instability. [27] Last, some of the worst perpetrators of historical evils are governments, not private corporations. [28]

  3. Conclusion

It is difficult to justifiably draw general conclusions about what a pure capitalism or socialism would be like in practice. [29] But an examination of the merits and demerits of each system gives us some guidance about whether we should move a society in either direction.

[1] See my Defining Capitalism and Socialism for an explanation of how to define these systems.

[2] For much-more-extensive surveys, see Gilabert and O’Neill n.d. and Arnold n.d.

[3] By analogy, different people might try to construct even better magic wands, or use them for better purposes. Typically the benefits are thought to include lower prices, increased equality, innovation, and more options. See Smith 2003 [1776]: bk. 1, ch. 2 and Friedman and Friedman 1979: ch. 1.

[4] Schweickart 2011 presents an outline of a market socialism comprising much competition.

[5] By analogy, if I legitimately own the magic wand, then what gives you the right to threaten violence against me if I don’t give it to you? Nozick 1974: ch. 7 presents a general discussion of how socialism might restrict freedom and how taxation may be akin to theft or forced labor.

[6] Spencer 1995 [1871]: 103-4 and Zwolinski 2015 discuss how property might require coercion. See also Scott 2011: 32-33. Indeed, property in general may essentially be theft (Proudhon 1994 [1840]).

[7] See Rawls (1999: 176-7) for this sort of argument. See John Rawls’ ‘A Theory of Justice’ by Ben Davies for an introduction.

[8] See e.g. Burawoy 1979 for a discussion of whether workers consent to work. See also Marx 2004 (1867): vol. IV, ch. VII.

[9] Rawls 1999: 62 ff.

[10] Relatedly, while one may currently hold capital, one may greatly owe the existence of that product to many other people or to society in general. See e.g. Kropotkin 2015 [1913]: chs. 1-3 and Murphy and Nagel 2002.

[11] A public good is a good that is non-excludable (roughly, it is expensive to prevent people from using it) and non-rivalrously consumed (roughly, preventing people from using it causes harm without benefiting anyone) (Cowen 2008).

[12] By analogy, why bother building magic wands at all if someone else is immediately going to take it from me and start using it? Standard economic theory holds that public goods (non-excludable and non-rivalrous goods) will, on the free market, be underproduced. This is normally taken to be an argument for government to produce public goods. See e.g. Gaus 2008: 84 ff.

[13] For example, according to Marxist communism, the ideal socialist society would comprise production for use, not for profit. See e.g. Marx 2004 [1867]: vol. 1 ch. 7. See also Kropotkin 1902, which is a defense of the general claim that humans will tend to be altruistic, at least in anarcho-communist systems.

[14] In a market-socialist system (cf. Schweickart 2011), it is possible to make capital goods and sell them at a profit that gets distributed to the laborers.

[15] By analogy, if I know that anyone in the neighborhood can use the magic wand, I might not invest my own time and money to maintain it. But if it’s mine alone, I care a lot more about maintaining it. This is the basis of the well-known ‘Tragedy of the Commons’ alleged problem. See, e.g., Hardin 1968.

[16] Kropotkin 1902.

[17] As before, in Schweickart’s (2011) system, firms will be motivated to protect capital if they must pay for capital’s deprecation, even though the capital is owned by society.

[18] By analogy, as noted, the wand-owner might make lots of money for basically doing no work. Sherman 1995: 130; Schweickart 2011: § 3.2.

[19] See e.g. Friedman 2002 for a collection of consequentialist arguments for capitalism, and Nozick 1974: chs. 3 and 7 for some arguments concerning freedom and capitalist systems.

[20] By analogy, the wand-owner might accumulate so much money as to start buying other magic wands and renting those out as well. See e.g. Piketty 2014.

[21] Taking the world as a whole, wealth in absolute terms has been increasing greatly, and global poverty has been decreasing steeply, including in countries that have moved in mostly capitalist directions. See e.g. World Bank Group 2016: 3. Friedman 1989: ch. 5 argues that capitalism is responsible for the improved position of the poor today compared to the past.

[22] See e.g. Friedman 1989: ch. 7 for a discussion of regulatory capture.

[23] Friedman 2002: chs. IV and IX; Friedman 1989: ch. 4.

[24] By analogy, the person I’ve hired to use the wand might need to obey my orders, because they don’t have a wand of their own to rent out, and they might starve without the job I’ve offered them. Marx 2009 [1932] introduces and develops this concept of alienation. See Dan Lowe’s 2015 Karl Marx’s Conception of Alienation for an overview. See also Anderson 2015 for an argument that private corporations coercively violate their workers’ freedom.

[25] See n. 21 above. This result is most-obvious in countries in which dictators enrich themselves, but there is nothing in principle preventing rulers of ostensibly democratic countries from doing so as well. Presumably this worry explains the presence of the Emoluments Clause in the U. S. Constitution.

[26] See n. 14.

[27] See e.g. Friedman 2002: chs. III and V and the example of compliance costs for regulations.

[28] See Huemer 2013: ch. 6 ff.

[29] All or nearly all large-scale economies have been mixed economies. In contrast, a pure capitalism would be an anarcho-capitalism (see e.g. Gaus 2010: 75 ff. and Huemer 2013), and a pure socialism wouldn’t permit people to privately own scissors. See also the entry “Defining Capitalism and Socialism.”

Anderson, Elizabeth. 2015. Private Government: How Employers Rule Our Lives (and Why We Don’t Talk about It) . Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Arnold, Samuel. N. d. “Socialism.” In The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy (ed.), The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy , URL = < https://www.iep.utm.edu/socialis/ >

Burawoy, Michael. 1979. Manufacturing Consent: Changes in the Labor Process under Monopoly Capitalism . Chicago, IL and London, UK: The University of Chicago Press.

Cohen, G. A. 2009. Why Not Socialism? Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Cowen, Tyler. 2008. “Public Goods.” In David R. Henderson (ed.), The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics . Indianapolis, IN: Liberty Fund.

Dagger, Richard and Terence Ball. 2019. “Socialism.” In Encyclopædia Britannica, inc. (ed.), E ncyclopædia Britannica . Retrieved from https://www.britannica.com/topic/socialism

Dahl, Robert A. 1993. “Why All Democratic Countries have Mixed Economies.” Nomos 35: 259-82.

Dictionary.com. N.d. “Capitalism.” URL = < https://www.dictionary.com/browse/capitalism >

Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica. 2019. “Henri de Saint-Simon.” In Encyclopædia Britannica , Retrieved from https://www.britannica.com/biography/Henri-de-Saint-Simon

Friedman, David D. 1989. The Machinery of Freedom: Guide to a Radical Capitalism , Second Edition. La Salle, IL: Open Court Publishing Company.

Friedman, Milton. 2002. Capitalism and Freedom . Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.

Friedman, Milton and Rose Friedman. 1979. Free to Choose: A Personal Statement . New York, NY: Harcourt Brace.

Gaus, Gerald. 2010. “The Idea and Ideal of Capitalism.” In George G. Brenkert and Tom L. Beauchamp (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Business Ethics . New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Gaus, Gerald. 2008. On Philosophy, Politics, and Economics . Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth.

Gilabert, Pablo and Martin O’Neill. 2019. “Socialism.” In E. N. Zalta (ed.), The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy . Retrieved from https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/socialism/ .

Hardin, Garrett. 1968. “The Tragedy of the Commons.” Science 162(3859): 1243-48.

Herzog, Lisa. 2019. “Markets.” In E. N. Zalta (ed.), The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy , Spring 2019 Edition, URL =https://plato.stanford.edu/archives/spr2019/entries/markets/

Huemer, Michael. 2013. The Problem of Political Authority: An Examination of the Right to Coerce and the Duty to Obey . Houndmills, UK and New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

Investopedia. 2019. “Mixed Economic System.” Retrieved from https://www.investopedia.com/terms/m/mixed-economic-system.asp

Kropotkin, P. 1902. Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution . New York, NY: McClure Phillips & Co.

Kropotkin, Peter. 2015 [1913]. The Conquest of Bread. London, UK: Penguin Classics.

Lowe, Dan. 2015. “Karl Marx’s Conception of Alienation.” 1000-Word Philosophy . Retrieved from https://1000wordphilosophy.com/2015/05/13/karl-marxs-conception-of-alienation/.

Marx, Karl. 2009 [1932]. “Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844.” In Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844 and the Communist Manifesto , tr. Martin Milligan (Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books), pp. 13-202.

Marx, Karl. 2004 [1867]. Capital: A Critique of Political Economy, Volume One . New York, NY: Penguin Classics.

Merriam-Webster. N.d. “Capitalism.” URL = < https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/capitalism >

Mill, John Stuart. 1965 [1848]. Principles of Political Economy with Some of Their Applications to Social Philosophy, Volume I: The Principles of Political Economy I , ed. J. M. Robson. Toronto, ON: University of Toronto Press.

Murphy, Liam and Thomas Nagel. 2002. The Myth of Ownership: Taxes and Justice. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

Nozick, Robert. 1974. Anarchy, State, and Utopia . New York, NY: Basic Books.

Oxford English Dictionary, N.d. a. “Capital.” Retrieved from http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/27450

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Oxford English Dictionary. N.d. d. “Socialism.” Retrieved from http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/183741

Piketty, Thomas. 2014. Capital in the Twenty-First Century , tr. Arthur Goldhammer. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Proudhon, Pierre-Joseph. 1994 [1840]. What is Property? Ed. Donald R. Kelley and Bonnie G. Smith. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Rawls, John. 1999. A Theory of Justice, Revised Edition . Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Schweickart, David. 2011. After Capitalism , Second Edition. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.

Scott, Bruce R. 2011. Capitalism: Its Origins and Evolution as a System of Governance . New York, NY: Springer Science+Business Media.

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Zwolinski, Matt. 2015. “Property Rights, Coercion, and the Welfare State: The Libertarian Case for a Basic Income for All.” The Independent Review 19(4): 515-29

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Tom Metcalf is an associate professor at Spring Hill College in Mobile, AL. He received his PhD in philosophy from the University of Colorado, Boulder. He specializes in ethics, metaethics, epistemology, and the philosophy of religion. Tom has two cats whose names are Hesperus and Phosphorus. shc.academia.edu/ThomasMetcalf

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Essay on Capitalism

Students are often asked to write an essay on Capitalism in their schools and colleges. And if you’re also looking for the same, we have created 100-word, 250-word, and 500-word essays on the topic.

Let’s take a look…

100 Words Essay on Capitalism

What is capitalism.

Capitalism is an economic system where private individuals or businesses own goods and services. They make things or provide services to sell for profit. In this system, the market decides prices based on supply and demand. If many people want something that’s hard to get, it becomes expensive. If nobody wants something or it’s easy to get, it’s cheap.

Benefits of Capitalism

Capitalism can lead to innovation because companies compete to make better products. It also gives people freedom to choose their jobs and what they want to buy. When businesses succeed, they can create more jobs for people.

Challenges of Capitalism

Sometimes capitalism can make the rich richer and the poor poorer. This happens because not everyone starts with the same chance to succeed. Also, without rules, businesses might harm the environment or treat workers badly to lower costs and increase profits.

Capitalism in the World

Many countries have capitalism, but they also have laws to protect workers and the environment. Some countries mix capitalism with government programs that help people, like free healthcare or education. This mix can help fix some problems of pure capitalism.

250 Words Essay on Capitalism

Capitalism is like a big game where businesses and people try to make as much money as they can. Imagine a marketplace where everyone is free to sell their goods and services and set their prices. People can start their own businesses, and the ones with the best products or services often make the most money.

Freedom to Choose

In a capitalist system, you get to make choices. You can decide what to buy, which job to take, and even start your own company. This freedom means that if someone makes something really good or useful, they can become successful. But it also means that if they don’t do a good job, they might not make money, and someone else who does it better could win the customers.


Competition is a big deal in capitalism. It’s like a race where businesses try to outdo each other to win customers. This can lead to better products and lower prices. It’s good for customers because they get more choices and can find things that are better or cheaper.

Money and Wealth

Capitalism can make some people very rich. When a person or a company does really well, they can earn a lot of money. But this also means that not everyone gets the same amount. Some people might have a lot, while others have very little.

Capitalism is all about making money, having the freedom to choose, and competing in the market. It has its good sides, like better products and choices, but it also means not everyone will have the same amount of money. It’s a system that can help people succeed if they have a good idea and work hard.

500 Words Essay on Capitalism

Capitalism is a way of running an economy where private individuals or businesses own and operate the different things needed to make and sell goods and services. This includes factories, tools, and shops. In a capitalist system, the main goal is to make money. People who have money to invest, known as capitalists, spend their money on things that can make more money, like factories or machines.

Freedom of Choice

One big part of capitalism is freedom of choice. This means that businesses can decide what to make, and people can choose what to buy. If a toy company thinks that making a new toy will earn them money, they can go ahead and make it. Then, it’s up to the kids and parents to decide if they want to buy that toy. This freedom allows for lots of different products to be available in the market.

Competition is another important aspect of capitalism. Imagine there are two shops in your town that sell ice cream. One shop might try to have better flavors or lower prices to get more customers. This competition can lead to better products and services for everyone. Companies are always trying to improve what they sell and how they sell it to beat their rivals and attract more customers.

Pros of Capitalism

Capitalism has some good points. It encourages people to work hard and be creative, because they can keep most of the money they make. This can lead to new inventions and businesses. Also, since there is competition, customers usually get to choose from a variety of goods and services that might be better quality or less expensive.

Cons of Capitalism

However, capitalism isn’t perfect. Sometimes, it can lead to a few people getting very rich while others stay poor. If a business owner becomes successful, they might make a lot of money, but the people working for them might not earn as much. Also, in the race to make more money, businesses might harm the environment or not treat their workers well.

Many countries have a capitalist system, but they all do it a bit differently. For example, in some places, the government has rules to make sure businesses treat workers fairly and don’t hurt the environment. In other countries, the government lets businesses do more of what they want.

In conclusion, capitalism is a way of organizing an economy that focuses on private ownership and making profits. It has benefits like encouraging hard work and innovation, and it also has downsides such as inequality and potential harm to people or the planet. Countries around the world practice capitalism in various ways, with different rules and regulations to balance these pros and cons. Understanding capitalism is important because it affects how businesses operate, what products are available, and the overall economy of a country.

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capitalism essay 300 words

Saving Capitalism: Its Role in Modern World Essay

The idea of capitalism, issues to disclose, additional arguments, works cited.

The development of trade relations among people primarily predetermined the emergence of property that can be both public and private. Today, a capitalist approach to the economy is a widespread phenomenon since the primary goal of most large and small enterprises is to earn money. However, from the point of view of some individuals who own substantial capital, the question may arise about how rich people become prosperous and why their capitals largely exceed the budgets of middle-class residents.

Similar questions are raised in the book by Reich who notes that “the rise of non-working rich is logical if the state economy allows private sectors to develop and gain profit” (144). This position is quite logical because in case the authorities do not restrict property rights and the possibility of buying and selling certain goods, great prospects are opened. Moreover, particular financial schemes can allow earning very large funds and increasing savings in the future. This type of economic structure is called capitalistic, and one of its central conditions is the right to private property and free trade within the limits of the norms established by the law.

Despite a very detailed description of the capitalist model of the economy and the arguments about the property influence, Reich did not emphasize a significant focus on some relevant themes. The issue of sources of profit was not disclosed, which can be considered an omission. This topic is an important aspect of capitalism and its provisions since not all the methods of earning can bring greater financial profit on a country-by-country scale. Therefore, a number of questions may arise, which will be relevant to the topic of sources of earnings and control over the money of people with above-average income. One of the main questions may sound as follows: how do high-income people earn big money in an economic crisis, and can their ways of making money be considered legitimate and fair?

The answer to this question can be found in the work by Sexton, another sociologist who focuses on commodity-money relations among people and mentions the participation of the authorities in the process of distributing funds (48). Similar ideas but in a freer interpretation are presented by Neate who argues that “the increase in the number of billionaires is a natural process” since large businessmen’s savings are constantly growing, and the resources that they use (oil, cotton, etc.) are not lost. Such ideas are the clear features of a capitalist economy. From the legal point of view, the activity of billionaires is legitimate, and possible manipulations and schemes are a problem of the respective controlling boards.

Also, one of the judgments about the legitimacy of many businessmen’s activities belongs to Neate who is confident that the anger of average citizens is partly justified since the billionaires’ dynasties use various types of tricks to increase their wealth. The fact that different expensive purchases are constantly bought by big businesses irritates people, and it causes legitimate grounds in the suspicion of billionaires in fraud. Nevertheless, due to the promoted ideas of capitalism, this type of economy is dominant, and in order to correct something, it is required to completely reorganize the revenue reporting system so that the state could have a clear idea of ​​the legitimacy of everybody’s earnings.

Neate, Rupert. “ World’s Witnessing a New Gilded Age as Billionaires’ Wealth Swells to $6tn .” The Guardian . 2016. Web.

Reich, Robert B. Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few . Vintage, 2016.

Sexton, Patricia C. The War on Labor and the Left: Understanding America’s Unique Conservatism . Westview Press, 1991.

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IvyPanda . "Saving Capitalism: Its Role in Modern World." October 20, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/saving-capitalism-its-role-in-modern-world/.

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Performance and Progress: Essays on Capitalism, Business, and Society

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1 What’s Wrong with Capitalism?

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Capitalism as a system for economic organization and resource allocation is suffering a worldwide crisis of confidence, with growing inequality, financial crises, and a structural unemployment that affects youth disproportionally. Since the Cold War western capitalism has been treated as the only acceptable form of economic system, andthe public or political realm has itself come to be dominated by the money of special-interest groups. This has in turn led to mass protest movements across the developed and developing worlds, and a weakening of the political center in favor of more extreme political currents. Fissures have been widening between the investor class enjoying growing returns on capital and the wage-earning class suffering declining returns from their labor. And increased financialization of the economy means the traditional economic theories based on production in a classical sense are increasingly irrelevant to the modern economy. Above all a sense of unfairness and decades of growing inequality risk the stability and sustainability of the system and its acceptance, and an erosion in societal trust and the very institutions needed to sustain the system.

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What Is Capitalism: Varieties, History, Pros & Cons, Socialism

Daniel Liberto is a journalist with over 10 years of experience working with publications such as the Financial Times, The Independent, and Investors Chronicle.

capitalism essay 300 words

Pete Rathburn is a copy editor and fact-checker with expertise in economics and personal finance and over twenty years of experience in the classroom.

capitalism essay 300 words

What Is Capitalism?

Capitalism is an economic system in which private individuals or businesses own capital goods. At the same time, business owners employ workers who receive only wages; labor doesn't own the means of production but instead uses them on behalf of the owners of capital.

The production of goods and services under capitalism is based on supply and demand in the general market, also known as the market economy . This is in contrast to a planned economy or a command economy , in which prices are set through central planning.

The purest form of capitalism is free-market or laissez-faire capitalism. Here, private individuals are unrestrained. They may determine where to invest, what to produce or sell, and at which prices to exchange goods and services. The laissez-faire marketplace operates without checks or controls. Today, most countries practice a mixed capitalist system that includes some degree of government regulation of business and some extent of public ownership of select industries.

Key Takeaways

  • Capitalism is an economic system characterized by private ownership of the means of production, with labor solely paid wages.
  • Capitalism depends on the enforcement of private property rights, which provide incentives for investment in and productive use of capital.
  • Capitalism developed out of feudalism and mercantilism in Europe and dramatically expanded industrialization and the large-scale availability of mass-market consumer goods.
  • Pure capitalism can be contrasted with pure socialism, in which all means of production are collective or state-owned.

Understanding Capitalism

Capitalism is one type of system of economic production and resource distribution. Instead of planning economic decisions through centralized political methods, as with socialism or feudalism, economic planning under capitalism occurs via decentralized, competitive, and voluntary decisions.

Capitalism is essentially an economic system in which the means of production—factories, tools, machines, raw materials, etc—are organized by one or more business owners, also known as capitalists. Capitalists then hire workers to operate the means of production in return for wages. Workers have no claim on the means of production or on the profits generated from their labor; these belong to the capitalists.

As such, private property rights are fundamental to capitalism. Most modern concepts of private property stem from John Locke's theory of homesteading, in which human beings claim ownership by mixing their labor with unclaimed resources. Once owned, the only legitimate means of transferring property are through voluntary exchange, gifts, inheritance , or the re-homesteading of abandoned property.

Private property promotes efficiency by giving the owner of resources an incentive to maximize the value of their property. The more valuable a resource is, the more trading power it provides the owner. In a capitalist system, the person who owns the property is entitled to any value associated with that property.

Why Private Property Rights Matter for Capitalism

For individuals or businesses to deploy their capital goods confidently, a system must exist that protects their legal right to own or transfer private property. A capitalist society relies on the use of contracts, fair dealing, and tort law to facilitate and enforce these private property rights.

When property isn't privately owned but rather is shared by the public, a problem known as the tragedy of the commons can emerge. With a common pool resource—which all people can use and none can limit access to—all individuals have an incentive to extract as much use-value as they can and no incentive to conserve or reinvest in the resource. Privatizing the resource is one possible solution to this problem, along with various voluntary or involuntary collective action approaches.  

Under capitalist production, the business owners retain ownership of the goods being produced. If a worker in a shoe factory were to take home a pair of shoes that they made, it would be theft. This concept is known as the alienation of workers from their labor.

Capitalism and the Profit Motive

Profits are closely associated with the concept of private property. By definition, an individual only enters into a voluntary exchange of private property when they believe the exchange benefits them in some psychic or material way. In such trades, each party gains extra subjective value, or profit, from the transaction.

The profit motive , or the desire to earn profits from business activity, is the driving force of capitalism. It creates a competitive environment in which businesses compete to be the low-cost producer of a certain good in order to gain market share. If it is more profitable to produce a different type of good, then a business is incentivized to switch.

Voluntary trade is another, related mechanism that drives activity in a capitalist system. The owners of resources compete with one another over consumers, who, in turn, compete with other consumers over goods and services. All this activity is built into the price system, which balances supply and demand to coordinate the distribution of resources.

A capitalist earns the highest profit by using capital goods such as machinery and tools most efficiently while producing the highest-value good or service. By contrast, the capitalist suffers losses when capital resources aren't used efficiently and instead create less-valuable outputs.

Capitalism vs. Markets

Capitalism is a system of economic production. Markets are systems of distribution and allocation of goods already produced. While they often go hand-in-hand, capitalism and free markets refer to two distinct systems.

Precursors to Capitalism: Feudalism and Mercantilism

Capitalism is a relatively new type of social arrangement for producing goods in an economy. It arose largely along with the advent of the Industrial Revolution , some time in the late 17th century. Before capitalism, other systems of production and social organization were prevalent.

Feudalism and the Roots of Capitalism

Capitalism grew out of European feudalism. Up until the 12th century, a very small percentage of the population of Europe lived in towns. Skilled workers lived in the city but received their keep from feudal lords rather than a real wage, and most workers were serfs for landed nobles. However, by the late Middle Ages, rising urbanism, with cities as centers of industry and trade, became more and more economically important.

Under feudalism, society was segmented into social classes based on birth or family lineage. Lords (nobility) were the landowners, while serfs (peasants and laborers) didn't own land but were under the employ of the landed nobility.

The advent of industrialization revolutionized the trades and encouraged more people to move into towns where they could earn more money working in a factory than existing at a subsistence level in exchange for labor.


Mercantilism gradually replaced the feudal economic system in Western Europe and became the primary economic system of commerce during the 16th to 18th centuries. Mercantilism started as trade between towns, but it wasn't necessarily competitive trade. Initially, each town had vastly different products and services that were slowly homogenized over time by demand.

After the homogenization of goods, trade was carried out in broader and broader circles: town to town, county to county, province to province, and, finally, nation to nation. When too many nations were offering similar goods for trade, the trade took on a competitive edge that was sharpened by strong feelings of nationalism on a continent that was constantly embroiled in wars.

Colonialism flourished alongside mercantilism, but the nations seeding the world with settlements weren't trying to increase trade. Most colonies were set up with an economic system that smacked of feudalism, with their raw goods going back to the motherland and, in the case of the British colonies in North America, being forced to repurchase the finished product with a pseudo- currency that prevented them from trading with other nations.

It was economist Adam Smith who noticed that mercantilism was a regressive system that was creating trade imbalances between nations and keeping them from advancing. His ideas for a free market opened the world to capitalism.

The Growth of Industry

Adam Smith's ideas were well-timed, as the Industrial Revolution was starting to cause tremors that would soon shake the Western world. The (often-literal) gold mine of colonialism had brought new wealth and new demand for the products of domestic industries, which drove the expansion and mechanization of production.

As technology leaped ahead and factories no longer had to be built near waterways or windmills to function, industrialists began building in the cities where there were now thousands of people to supply labor.

Capitalism involved reorganizing society into social classes based not on ownership of land, but ownership of capital (in other words, businesses). Capitalists were able to earn profits from the surplus labor of the working class, who earned only wages. Thus, the two social classes defined by capitalism are the capitalists and the laboring classes.

Industrial tycoons were the first people to amass wealth, often outstripping both the landed nobles and many of the money-lending/banking families. For the first time in history, common people could have hopes of becoming wealthy. The new money crowd built more factories that required more labor, while also producing more goods for people to purchase.

During this period, the term "capitalism"—originating from the Latin word " capitalis ," which means "head of cattle"—rose to prominence. In 1850, French socialist Louis Blanc used the term to signify a system of exclusive ownership of industrial means of production by private individuals rather than shared ownership.

Pros and Cons of Capitalism

More efficient allocation of capital resources

Competition leads to lower consumer prices

Wages and general standards of living rise overall

Spurs innovation and invention

Creates inherent class conflict between capital and labor

Generates enormous wealth disparities and social inequalities

Can incentivize corruption and crony capitalism in the pursuit of profit

Produces negative effects such as pollution

Pros Explained

More efficient allocation of capital resources : Labor and means of production follow capital in this system because supply follows demand.

Competition leads to lower consumer prices : Capitalists are in competition against one another, and so will seek to increase their profits by cutting costs, including labor and materials costs. Mass production also usually benefits consumers.

Wages and general standards of living rise overall : Wages under capitalism increased, helped by the formation of unions. More and better goods became cheaply accessible to wide populations, raising standards of living in previously unthinkable ways.

Spurs innovation and invention : In capitalism, inequality is the driving force that encourages innovation, which then pushes economic development.

Cons Explained

Creates inherent class conflict between capital and labor : While capitalists enjoy the potential for high profits, workers may be exploited for their labor, with wages always kept lower than the true value of the work being done.

Generates enormous wealth disparities and social inequalities : Capitalism has created an immense gap between the wealthy and the poor, as well as social inequalities.

Can incentivize corruption and crony capitalism in the pursuit of profit : Capitalism can provide incentives for corruption emerging from favoritism and close relationships between business people and the state.

Produces negative effects such as pollution : Capitalism often leads to a host of negative externalities , such as air and noise pollution, and these costs paid for by society, rather than the producer of the effect.

Capitalism vs. Socialism

In terms of political economy , capitalism is often contrasted with socialism . The fundamental difference between the two is the ownership and control of the means of production.

In a capitalist economy, property and businesses are owned and controlled by individuals. In a socialist economy, the state owns and manages the vital means of production. However, other differences also exist in the form of equity, efficiency, and employment.

The capitalist economy is unconcerned about equitable arrangements. The primary concern of the socialist model is the redistribution of wealth and resources from the rich to the poor, out of fairness, and to ensure equality in opportunity and equality of outcome. Equality is valued above high achievement, and the collective good is viewed above the opportunity for individuals to advance.

The capitalist argument is that the profit incentive drives corporations to develop innovative new products desired by the consumer and in demand in the marketplace. It is argued that the state ownership of the means of production leads to inefficiency because, without the motivation to earn more money, management, workers, and developers are less likely to put forth the extra effort to push new ideas or products.

In a capitalist economy, the state doesn't directly employ the workforce. This lack of government-run employment can lead to unemployment during economic recessions and depressions .

In a socialist economy, the state is the primary employer. During times of economic hardship, the socialist state can order hiring, so there is full employment. Also, there tends to be a stronger "safety net" in socialist systems for workers who are injured or permanently disabled. Those who can no longer work have fewer options available to help them in capitalist societies.

Karl Marx, Capitalism, and Socialism

Philosopher Karl Marx was famously critical of the capitalist system of production because he saw it as an engine for creating social ills, massive inequalities, and self-destructive tendencies. Marx argued that , over time, capitalist businesses would drive one another out of business through fierce competition, while, at the same time, the laboring class would swell and begin to resent their unfair conditions. His solution was socialism, through which the means of production would be handed over to the laboring class in an egalitarian fashion.

Varieties of Capitalism

Today, many countries operate with capitalist production, but this also exists along a spectrum . In reality, there are elements of pure capitalism that operate alongside otherwise-socialist institutions.

The standard spectrum of economic systems places laissez-faire capitalism at one extreme and a complete planned economy—such as communism —at the other. Everything in between could be said to be a mixed economy. The mixed economy has elements of both central planning and unplanned private business. By this definition, nearly every country in the world has a mixed economy.

Mixed Capitalism

When the government owns some but not all the means of production and may legally circumvent, replace, limit, or otherwise regulate private economic interests, it is said to be a mixed economy or mixed economic system . A mixed economy respects property rights, but places limits on them.

Property owners are restricted as to how they exchange with one another. These restrictions come in many forms, such as minimum wage laws, tariffs, quotas, windfall taxes, license restrictions, prohibited products or contracts, direct public expropriation , antitrust legislation, legal tender laws, subsidies, and eminent domain . Governments in mixed economies also fully or partly own and operate certain industries, especially those considered public goods .


In contrast, with pure capitalism, also known as laissez-faire capitalism or anarcho-capitalism , all industries are left up to private ownership and operation, including public goods, and no central government authority provides regulation or supervision of economic activity in general.

What Is an Example of Capitalism?

An example of capitalist production would be if an entrepreneur starts a new widget company and opens a factory. This individual uses available capital that they own or from outside investors and buys the land, builds the factory, orders the machinery, and sources the raw materials. Workers are then hired by the entrepreneur to operate the machines and produce widgets. Note that the workers don't own the machines they use or the widgets that they produce. Instead, they receive only wages in exchange for their labor. These wages represent a small fraction of what the entrepreneur earns from the venture.

Who Benefits From Capitalism?

Capitalism tends to benefit capitalists the most. These include business owners, investors, and other owners of capital. While capitalism has been praised for improving the standard of living for many people across the board, it has by far benefited those at the top.

Why Is Capitalism Harmful?

Because of how it is structured, capitalism will always pit business owners and investors against the working class. Capitalists are also in competition against one another, and so will seek to increase their profits by cutting costs, including labor costs. At the same time, workers seek higher wages, fairer treatment, and better working conditions. These two incentives are fundamentally at odds, which creates class conflict.

Is Capitalism the Same as Free Enterprise?

Capitalism and free enterprise are often seen as synonymous. In truth, they are closely related yet distinct terms with overlapping features. It is possible to have a capitalist economy without complete free enterprise, and a free market without capitalism. Any economy is capitalist as long as private individuals control the factors of production . However, a capitalist system can still be regulated by government laws, and the profits of capitalist endeavors can still be taxed heavily. "Free enterprise" can roughly be understood to mean economic exchanges free of coercive government influence.

The Bottom Line

Capitalism is an economic and political system where trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit. Its core principles are accumulation, ownership, and profiting from capital. In its purest form, capitalism works best when these private owners have assurances that the wealth they generate will be kept in their own pocket, which is often a controversial proposition.

Capitalism is the dominant world economic system, although it often isn’t pure in form. In many countries, interventions from the state, a core trait of socialism, are frequent. Businesses are able to chase profit but within the boundaries set by the government. Most political theorists and nearly all economists argue that capitalism is the most efficient and productive system of exchange.

International Monetary Fund. " What Is Capitalism ?"

Nelson, Peter Lothian. " To Homestead a Nature Preserve: A Response to Block and Edelstein, 'Popsicle Sticks and Homesteading Land for Nature Preserves '. "  Review of Social and Economic Issues , vol. 2, no. 1, Spring 2019, pp. 71+. (Subscription required.)

Harvard Business School. " Tragedy of the Commons: What It Is and 5 Examples ."

Lester C. Thurow. " Profits ."

Michael Sonenscher. " Capitalism: The Word and the Thing ."

Laura LaHaye. " Mercantilism ."

Trinity University. " Adam Smith on Money, Mercantilism, and the System of Natural Liberty ."

Milios, John. " Social Classes in Classical and Marxist Political Economy ," The American Journal of Economics and Sociology, vol. 59, no. 2 (April 2000), pp. 283-302. (Subscription required.)

Cambridge University Press. " Cries of Pain: The Word 'Capitalism' ."

Columbia College. " Karl Marx ."

New World Encyclopedia. " Anarcho-Capitalism ."

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What is Capitalism?

How it works

“Freedom is the open window through which pours the sunlight of the human spirit and human dignity” (Herbert Hoover). In the 1920s, America turned away from worldly concerns and began concentrating on domestic affairs. Some might refer to this period in America as the Decade of Optimism. It ushered in many forward thinkers, innovators, innovations, and cultural changes. For example, Henry Ford created an efficient and cheap means to mass produce automobiles. This allowed even those who earned a modest income to purchase one of his cars.

Airplanes, movies, radio stations, washing machines, refrigerators, and paved roads were just a few of the innovations that the 1920s produced. Additionally, the “Roaring 20s” gave women the right to vote with the passing of the Nineteenth Amendment. The beating heart of this time period was an economic system called capitalism. As defined by Merriam-Webster, capitalism is “an economic system characterized by private or corporate ownership of capital goods, by investments that are determined by private decision, and by prices, production, and the distribution of goods that are determined mainly by competition in a free market” (Merriam-Webster). Capitalism is about efficiency, economic freedom, and individual liberty.

The 1920s also saw three Republican presidents in the White House. The latter two, Calvin Coolidge and Herbert Hoover, praised private businesses, innovations, detested big government, and had “a deep faith in the essential soundness of capitalism, which…represented the fullest expression of individualism” (Scholastic). Capitalism paved the way for the innovations that shaped America. Entrepreneurs came up with ideas and were able to freely test them in the marketplace. Almost every product you love today is a product of capitalism. Conversely, almost everything you cannot stand is a product of the government (i.e., BMV, TSA, post offices, IRS). Henry Ford did not revolutionize the auto industry due to an order from the government. The great advancements of civilization were not created by government institutions but rather from private citizens. Entrepreneurs have given us products, innovations, and medicines that have become necessities in our society. Albeit, no system is perfect. Capitalism offers the most freedom and opportunity to each and every one of its citizens; it benefits its entire society and results in the most economic growth of any other economic system. First, capitalism offers the most freedom and opportunity to each and every one of its citizens. “Everyone has equal opportunity under capitalism. The important truth in this belief is that in countries with relatively open capitalist economies, it is possible for some poor people to work their way up. Most well-off Americans have only to trace back in their families one or two generations to find ancestors of poor or modest means” (Brians). Capitalism gives everyone an equal opportunity to pursue their dreams. It takes limitations away and offers endless possibilities. Those that rise to the top are the ones willing to take risks. They work hard and are dedicated. Additionally, Milton Friedman, an American economist, states, “The great virtue of a free market system is that it does not care what color people are; it does not care what their religion is; it only cares whether they can produce something you want to buy. It is the most effective system we have discovered to enable people who hate one another to deal with one another and help one another” (Friedman). Where monopolies and trading restrictions are common, so too is the special treatment of racial and religious groups over another and, as Friedman adds, the ability to “keep people in their place” (Friedman).

Second, everyone benefits in a capitalist society. Capitalism benefits more than just wealthy entrepreneurs. Everyone benefits from their innovations. The freer the society, the better off its citizens are along many non-economic lines. Thanks to innovations and advancements in technology, even a low-income earner in a capitalist society is better off now than they were years ago, even when comparing living standards for them today with citizens of less free economic societies. Antony Davies and James Harrigan summarize: “On average, people in countries that are more economically free enjoy higher incomes, suffer less unemployment and less poverty, experience less child labor, less gender inequality, less income inequality, less deforestation, and better air quality. Yes, even the environment is healthier where economic freedom is greater” (Horowitz). Capitalism offers its citizens a higher standard of living. Most have electricity, modern plumbing, heating, air conditioning, cell phones, TVs, cable, and more. Most have at least a basic education. Thanks to modern medicine and accessibility to all, people are living longer, as there is less sickness and disease. Even if an individual does not seem to be financially well off under capitalism, they still benefit in many ways. In contrast, with stratified social systems and socialism, necessities deemed by a capitalist society only seem to go to those at the top. Bernie Sanders and other Democratic Socialist American politicians like to talk about the 1%ers in America. However, a citizen of capitalist-leaning America making $34,000 a year after taxes makes up the world’s 1% (Hawkins). Capitalism has afforded American citizens with a better quality of life than much of the world. Lastly, capitalism results in the most economic growth of any other economic system. “Economic growth is measured by an increase in the amount of goods and services produced over a period of time. The more growth we see, the more we produce as a society,” (Spaceship.com). Entrepreneurs, incentivized by their innovations, create a climate of innovation and economic expansion. Innovation and economic expansion increase the real GDP, leading to improved living standards. The trickle-down from the rich to the poor increases the wealth of all citizens under capitalism and enables a higher standard of living. One way to measure how well a person or country is doing economically is to look at the GDP (Gross Domestic Product), which is the total number of goods and services produced in a year. The Fraser Institute summarizes:

“Nations in the top quartile of economic freedom had an average per-capita GDP of $42,463 in 2015, compared to $6,036 for bottom quartile nations (PPP constant 2011 US$). In the top quartile, the average income of the poorest 10% was $11,998, compared to $1,124 in the bottom quartile in 2015 (PPP constant 2011 US$.) Interestingly, the average income of the poorest 10% in the most economically free nations is almost twice the average per capita income in the least free nations,” (Horowitz).

What this Economic Freedom of the World Index proves is a direct correlation between those countries that are economically better off also being the most economically free. “The average person in the United States produces 3.4x more than the world average in terms of GDP per capita” (Spaceship.com). America is also one of the most capitalist countries in the world.

Conversely, opponents of capitalism claim that it produces a culture of greed, with high-earning “fat cat” CEOs, Wall Street bankers, and entrepreneurs making exorbitant amounts of money while their employees earn only a meager salary. One cannot dispute the fact that all economic systems reflect inherent self-concern. However, these “fat cats” have no choice but to concern themselves with the needs of others, which is quite the opposite of greed. They must work with others to design goods and services that meet the needs of their consumers. Their profit is not so much self-interest as it is a measure of how well they have listened to and met their consumers’ needs. Capitalism is a two-way, fair voluntary economic exchange. When two free people come together on agreed-upon terms to peacefully exchange, each benefits. If the entrepreneur puts their needs above their consumers’, the business will surely fail, and a more altruistic entrepreneur would step in and offer the consumer what they were looking for, replacing the greedy one. Milton Friedman asked, “Is there any society that doesn’t run on greed?” (Friedman). Does Venezuela not run on greed? To suggest that capitalism is the only economic system to run on greed would be incorrect. Friedman continues:

“The only cases in which masses of people have escaped grinding poverty in recorded history are where they’ve had capitalism and free trade. Where the masses are worst off, it’s exactly in the places where countries have departed from capitalism and free trade. There is no alternate system thus far that can hold a candle to the productive activities that are unleashed by free enterprise” (Friedman). In conclusion, capitalism offers the most freedom and opportunity to each and every one of its citizens. It benefits its entire society and results in the most economic growth of any other economic system. Unless one is ashamed of unparalleled increases in income, increasing life expectancy, higher levels of education, and more political freedom, there is no reason to turn away from capitalism. It is a well-established, historically proven fact that when people are free to buy, sell, and invest with one another freely, they can achieve far more than when governments attempt to control those decisions. Capitalism’s superiority for economic growth and advancements is for everyone who believes that wealth is better than poverty; education is better than ignorance, and liberty is better than oppression. “One of the great mistakes is to judge policies and programs by their intentions rather than their results,” Friedman noted.


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capitalism essay 300 words

How to Write a 300-Word Essay: Length, Examples, Free Samples

How to Write a 300-Word Essay: Length, Examples, Free Samples

You might think writing a 300-word essay is easy because it is short. Well, it’s not all about the size. In a 300-word essay, you must express your thoughts and arguments concisely and within a very tight word limit.

The real challenge starts when you decide which sentence to leave out because every word matters and there’s no place for filler words. It is also tricky to fit the intro, arguments, and conclusion into a 300 word essay format. But are all these elements obligatory in such a kind of writing?

Let’s find out how to write a 300-word essay , its key elements, and where to find some excellent 300-words essay examples.

  • 🖊️ How to Write a 300-Word Essay

📎 300-Words Essay Sample

  • 🎊 More Essay Examples
  • 🪄 Tips for a 300 Words Essay
  • 🔎 300 Word Essay Topics

❓ 300-Words Essay FAQ

🔗 references, 📝 what does a 300-word essay look like.

The picture shows a basic structure of a 300-word essay.

Below, we will explain everything about 300-word essays. How many pages is a 300-word essay? What does it look like? Find a complete format breakdown here!

300 Word Essay Format

300 word essay types.

You can see a basic outline and its necessary elements above. However, these parts can change depending on the type of the essay. Each essay genre might imply a different structure and paragraph length.

Here are the most popular types of 300-word essays:

  • A narrative essay tells a story and is typically written in the first person.
  • A descriptive essay describes a person, place, or object in detail and uses sensory language.
  • An expository essay presents information and facts about a topic and provides an explanation or analysis.
  • A persuasive essay presents an argument or viewpoint on a particular topic and persuades the reader to agree with the author’s opinion.
  • A compare and contrast essay compares two or more subjects and highlights their similarities and differences.

300 Word Essay Length

The 300-word essay length depends on the font and page parameters. With Times New Roman, it is typically 0.6 pages if single-spaced or 1.2 pages if double-spaced. It is usually not more than 20 sentences long if your sentences are 15-20 words long.

How many paragraphs should a 300-word essay have? The number of paragraphs depends on the structure. A 300-word paper can be divided into five sections (1 – intro, 3 – body, 1 – conclusion), 2-5 sentences each if it follows the classical format.

🖊️ How to Write a 300 Word Essay – Simple Guide

Use this step-by-step explanation to write a winning 300-word essay:

The picture provides steps for writing a 300-word essay.

Step 1: Start with a Strong and Clear Thesis Statement

Your thesis should describe the essay’s main idea and guide both you and your readers throughout the essay. Spend some time researching the topic before you formulate the thesis statement. It will help create a more specific and focused thesis.

Step 2: Create an Outline

Outline preparation includes deciding on the paragraphs’ contents, order, and length . Think about the main idea that will be conveyed in each section. This will help organize the paper and ensure it flows logically and coherently . However, remember that each body paragraph should present a new thought with evidence that proves your point.

Step 3: Write the Essay

It is important to write clearly, using formal language that is easy to understand . In the beginning, highlight your essay’s core idea and prepare readers for what they will learn further. For each body paragraph, develop one topic idea and provide evidence and examples. In summary, briefly retell what you discussed in your paper: restate your thesis statement and touch on the significant points of the body.

Step 4: Reread and Edit the Essay

Take a break for a day or two before rereading the essay. It can help you gain a fresh perspective and catch errors you may have missed earlier . Check it for spelling and grammar errors . Don’t forget to ensure that the essay meets the word limit.

Here, you will find some examples of 300-word essays for college students.

300-Word Essay on Career Goals Examples

This is a 300-word essay on why I want to be a nurse topic:

Career goals provide a roadmap to success and help keep individuals motivated and focused. In this essay, I will discuss my career goals: becoming a healthcare professional, working in a hospital setting, and eventually obtaining a leadership role. My first career goal is to become a healthcare professional. My desire to help people and make a positive impact influenced this goal. I am pursuing a nursing degree, which will equip me with the necessary knowledge and skills to provide quality care. I plan to specialize in pediatrics or oncology, where I can make a difference in the lives of patients and their families. My second career goal is to work in a hospital setting. Hospitals are dynamic and challenging environments that require individuals to work well under pressure and think critically. Working in a hospital will allow me to gain experience in various areas of healthcare, such as emergency medicine and surgery. I also hope to work with a diverse patient population, which will broaden my perspective and deepen my understanding of healthcare. My third career goal is to obtain a leadership role. As a leader, I will be able to make a greater impact on patient care and healthcare delivery. I plan to get a master’s degree in healthcare administration or nursing leadership to prepare me for this role. I believe that effective leadership is essential for achieving positive outcomes in healthcare and ensuring that patients receive the highest quality of care. In conclusion, my career goals are to obtain a medical degree, a job in a hospital, and a leadership role. I am committed to achieving these goals by pursuing my college education, gaining experience in healthcare, and receiving advanced education in healthcare administration or nursing leadership. I am excited about these opportunities and look forward to positively impacting the lives of patients and the healthcare industry.

The picture provides the example of a 300-word essay on career goals.

🎊 More 200-300 Word Essay Examples

Check out our free 300-word essay samples on popular topics:

  • Romeo and Juliet essay 300 words. The paper analyzes the 1996 film adaptation of William Shakespeare’s play Romeo and Juliet, directed by Baz Luhrmann. The author discusses the theme of forbidden love and the various ways in which Luhrmann adapts the play.
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  • My pet dog essay 300 words. The paper argues that dogs make the best pets. The author explores dog qualities, including loyalty, companionship, and their ability to improve mental and physical health.
  • Global warming essay in English 300 words. The paper is a discussion of the economic instruments to regulate global warming. While economic tools can effectively regulate CO 2 emissions, there are concerns about the irrationality of tax rates and people’s willingness to pay more for familiar technology.
  • Friendship essay 300 words. The paper examines the aspects of intimacy in female friendships. It explores the different levels of intimacy, including emotional, physical, and intellectual intimacy. The author discusses the importance of intimacy in maintaining long-lasting and meaningful friendships between women.
  • 300 word essay about Thanksgiving. The paper discusses the history of the first Thanksgiving in the United States and compares it to modern Thanksgiving. The author explores the origins of Thanksgiving, its cultural significance, and how it has evolved.
  • Freedom of speech essay 300 words. The paper discusses the concept of freedom of speech and its relationship with censorship. The author explores the historical and philosophical underpinnings of freedom of speech and various forms of censorship.

🪄 BONUS Tips for a 300 Words Essay

🔎 300 word essay topics & examples.

If you feel ready to start writing a 200-300 word essay, get inspired by the topics we’ve collected below. Use these academic essay examples to make your 300-word essay flawless!

  • The impact of social media on society.
  • The benefits and drawbacks of remote learning.
  • The effects of regular fast food consumption on health.
  • The importance of exercise for mental health.
  • The impact of technology on communication.
  • The role of art during significant historical events.
  • The benefits and challenges of multiculturalism.
  • The impact of climate change on our daily lives.
  • The effects of stress on physical health.
  • The role of education in personal and societal development.
  • Religion in Chinese Society: Confucianism.
  • World War II: Impact on American Society.
  • Problems in the US Healthcare System.
  • Legalization of Marijuana: Pain Management.
  • The Future of Bio-Fuel in the Civil Aviation Industry.
  • Emotional Contagion Research in Psychology.
  • Curriculum Adaptation to the Needs of Students.
  • Aspects of the Global Surgical Package.
  • Subjective and Objective Description of Experience.
  • The Covid-19 Related Social Problems.
  • Communication Improved by “New Media in the News.”
  • Lego Company’s Core Values and Ethical Dilemmas.
  • The Major Causes of the Great Depression.
  • Strategies to Control Disease Incidence.
  • United AirlinesEnvironmental Sustainability Initiatives.
  • Activism and Extremism on the Internet.
  • Misinformation Online in Healthcare: Preventive Measures.
  • Freedom of Speech and Censorship.
  • Why Say “No” to Capital Punishment?
  • What Is Love?: Answer From the Different Points of View.
  • Budget Airlines and Their Growth Factors in Europe.
  • The Problem of Shooting in Schools.
  • Individual and Systemic Racism.
  • Three Dimensions of Sexuality.
  • The Issue of Homelessness.
  • Personal Responsibility and World Population.
  • Targeted Advertising in Business.
  • Femininity and Masculinity in Media and Culture.
  • Tesco Market Strategy: Outside-In and Inside-Out.
  • “ A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner.
  • The Corporate Social Responsibility in Sport.
  • Is Nuclear Power Renewable Energy?
  • Sex Education Among Young People.
  • The Unfair Control of Power.
  • Impact of Artificial Intelligence.

If you didn’t find anything suitable, try our free essay title generator , it will help you come up with a perfect 300-word essay topic!

How to write a 300 word essay?

To write a 300-word essay, start with drafting a thesis statement. Then create an essay plan with three main points to support your thesis. Begin each paragraph with a clear topic sentence and provide supporting evidence. Wrap up your essay with a concluding section that reinforces your thesis.

How long does it take to write a 300 word essay?

With adequate preparation and focus, it’s possible to complete a 300-word paper in 30 minutes to an hour. However, the actual time you need to write a 300-word essay varies depending on your experience and topic complexity.

What does a 300 word essay look like?

A 300-word essay typically begins with an introduction with a thesis statement. There are also three body paragraphs with supporting evidence. A concluding paragraph that reinforces the thesis is the final section. Each paragraph should contain no more than 70 words.

How many pages is a 300 word essay?

Let’s assume the font is size 12 with standard margins. Then a 300-word essay is generally one page if single-spaced or two pages if double-spaced. However, the formatting and spacing requirements may vary based on the assignment or instructor’s guidelines.

How long is a 300 word essay?

A 300-word essay is approximately one-third of a single-spaced page or two-thirds of a page if double-spaced. It’s essential to follow the formatting and spacing requirements outlined by the instructor or assignment guidelines.

  • Tips for writing short essays – Concordia University
  • How Many Pages Is 300 Words? – Capitalize My Title
  • Simple Ways to Write a Short Essay (with Pictures) – wikiHow
  • Essay Structure | Harvard Writing Center
  • 12 Useful Tips To Improve Your Essay Writing Skills | Indeed.com
  • Develop a Topic & Working Thesis – How to Write a Good Essay – LibGuides at Bow Valley College
  • How to Write a Statement of Professional Goals | College of Education
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Call for essays on the geopolitics of capitalism for State of Power 2025 report

The Transnational Institute (TNI)  is issuing an open call for essays, accessible papers, infographics and artistic collaborations for its 13th State of Power report to be launched in January 2025. The focus for our 13th edition is on the geopolitics of capitalism. Deadline for 1-2 page pitches: 5 June.

Open call by

capitalism essay 300 words

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TNI’s annual State of Power reports have, since their launch in 2012, become a must-read reference point for citizens, activists and academics concerned to understand the nature of power in our globalised world in order to inform struggles for justice. With a mixture of compelling infographics and insightful essays, State of Power has examined different dimensions of power (economic, political, social, cultural), exposed the key actors who exercise power, and highlighted movements of counter-power seeking to transform our world. State of Power reports have also been widely praised for their inspiring essays and brilliant art.

As well as an English edition, TNI also co-produces a Spanish edition of the report in collaboration with Fuhem Ecosocial and the Latin American Council of Social Sciences ( CLACSO )

Theme for 2025: Geopolitics of capitalism

We live in an age of empire and resistance - a shifting geography of global power. The military, political and financial support of one country, the US, above all others has allowed a small country - Israel - to commit genocide in Gaza, to the horror of the vast majority of people worldwide. The US military, its corporations, its digital giants, its banks, and its culture continue to dominate globally.

Yet at the same time, US-led imperialism has never felt more fractured and resisted. The heavily-resourced US army has been forced out of Afghanistan and this year was expelled from Niger. Nations such as Nicaragua and South Africa are taking powerful former colonial countries to court. Other international institutions, long seen as vehicles for exporting or enforcing US-led neoliberalism, such as the World Trade Organisation have seemingly run out of steam. The US is also increasingly isolated globally: Brazil, China, India, Russia and other nations are directly challenging its hegemony, and the US’ dysfunctional democracy is less and less cited as a model by other countries. There is a growing popular sense that the post-Cold War neoliberal globalised order is in crisis.

There is a need, though, to properly examine where geopolitical or geoeconomic power lies today – and how it is being exercised and how that might be changing. Is US hegemony really fading? Does any other nation, including China, pose any real challenge to US power, let alone offer a political or economic alternative? Has the heralded hope of a BRICS bloc collapsed amidst its contradictions? Are there any competing imperialist or sub-imperialist nations to the US whose power needs reckoning with? What does the reorganisation of supply chains on arguments of national security mean for the neoliberal idea of a borderless world for capital? How will the unfolding climate crisis affect this? What are transnational movements fighting for in terms of global governance?  What would it take to build a more equitable and just new international political and economic order?

For its 2025 edition, TNI is interested in proposals that explore these geopolitical shifts within capitalism in creative ways that help deepen understanding. We need to understand how power is shifting, what is changing and not, and where the new challenges and opportunities lie for transnational social movements. We welcome reflections from different disciplinary fields in order to create as rounded a picture as possible. We are also interested in producing some infographics or artwork that expose the reality.

In sum, our ultimate goal is not analysis for its own sake but rather to equip and empower international activists and movements with the analysis to sharpen their strategies to challenge, confront and overcome entrenched power.

These are some questions – but not an exclusive list – that we are interested in exploring and understanding better. In every case, we are interested in analysis of power relations – the what, the who, the how:

  • Who really has geopolitical power today? Does the US remain the hegemon in all areas of political, economic and social power? Or are there areas where it is vulnerable?
  • How much global power do China and other potential challengers to US imperialism actually have? How does it mirror or differ from US imperialism? How are they exercising it, what are their plans, and do they have the potential to replace the US?
  • Is a state-centered approach a good way of looking at geopolitics given the rise of corporate wealth power, or do we need another way of understanding global geography of power?
  • How do transnational corporations that control most of the global economy serve – or not- the interests of their host-states? How is the relationship between states and capital changing?
  • Looking to the future, which countries and respective corporations controls the most strategic areas of the global economy and will they be able to leverage that to exercise greater political power too?
  • How is US imperialism changing? How is it exercised today? Does the rise of nationalist populism, such as Trump’s Republicans, change the dynamic or not? What is the future of imperialism?
  • Are we moving to a multipolar world or something else?
  • Are China, Russia, India or other nations imperial or sub-imperial powers too? In what way? Or how are they not? How does this impact on social movements within those countries and in neighbouring countries? How should the international left engage?
  • How and where does colonial power – British, Dutch, French, German, Spanish, Portuguese – show up today in terms of political, economic and social hegemony? What forms does it take? How does it relate to US imperialism? Are there places it has been successfully resisted?
  • What can we learn from power relations in sub-peripheral economic zones such as Eastern Europe and North Africa that must grapple with both US and Russian hegemony?
  • Where is corporate power most concentrated geographically? What changes are we witnessing in supply chains, as well as forces of production and consumption? How are the renewed narratives of national security and techno-nationalism changing global power relations or are they just solidifying them?
  • What is the global geography of class power? Where is it strong and weak and where are their possibilities for transnational global alliances that could challenge corporate and elite power?
  • How is international governance being shaped as post-war norms fall apart? Are institutions like the UN effective places for struggle or not?
  • How will the climate crisis and responses to it impact on geopolitical and geoeconomic power? How will limits to growth shape it?
  • How are social movements responding to shifts in global power relations? How are they resisting both old and new hegemons? What are the best models for advancing transnational working peoples’ power against the concentration of capital?
  • What would it take to build a more equitable and just new international political and economic order?

As well as analysis, TNI would also be interested in specific case-studies that draw out general lessons as well as stories and artwork and films that help us understand the energy and power in creative and imaginative ways.

TNI has a small number of grants of 250-500 euros – to be prioritized for activists with low-incomes and/or working in the Global South. Please mention in your submission if you wish to apply for this grant, which will be awarded if your essay is published in the main report.


While TNI is proud of our high standard of scholarship, this call does not require any specific academic qualifications. Contributors to earlier editions of State of Power have included students, professors, well-known authors, journalists, activists and artists - all at different stages of their careers and lives. TNI particularly welcomes submissions by women, young scholars/artists and people based in the Global South.

The final report will be made up of a mixture of essays from this open call, a number of pre-commissioned essays, infographics as well as accompanying podcast(s) and webinar(s). The decision on which papers are featured will be decided by an Editorial Panel made up of editors of the report and a number of TNI’s associates. The selection process will follow five stages:

1. In the first stage, researchers will be asked to send to [email protected] a:

a) 1-2 page pitch for your long-read essay

b) a short bio

c) 3-5 links to previous work. It will help your application if your previous work is not just limited to academic texts but includes some more accessible journalistic pieces.

Pitches should include:

• the main argument you are trying to make

• how it relates to and helps us understand geopolitical and economic power

• the key points you would include

• stories or examples that illustrate it

The pitch can be based on existing papers or be provisional ideas of what you hope to explore. If you would like to apply for the grant – available to low-income participants –please indicate this at this stage.

2. Those whose pitches are chosen will be asked to submit an essay. The top 4-5 essays will be selected for the report by the Editorial Panel.

3. Authors of the selected essays will be invited to a ‘virtual’ authors conference to both present their work and give constructive feedback on one other essay.

4. The selected essays will go through a final round of revisions based on feedback by the Editorial Panel, and subject to final copyedit.

4. Essays that do not make the top 8-10– and are considered good essays by the Editorial Panel - will be available as downloadable PDFs linked from the main report. Grants unfortunately won’t be available though for the essays that don’t appear in the main report.

Submission requirements

  • Pitches should be written in English although actual essays can be written in English, Spanish or French as they will be translated and we have enough editors who can work in different languages.
  • They should be emailed to [email protected]
  • Pitches must be a maximum of 2 pages or 800 words. They do not need to be of continuous prose but must capture the main arguments of the essay and can be expanded outlines. Bios should be 200 words or less.
  • The decision of the Editorial Panel is final. If your pitch or essay is chosen, please be ready to respond to peer reviews and copy editing comments based on the timeline below.
  • Final Essay length: 3000-5000 words. The upper word limit is strictly applied.
  • Credible: Well researched and evidence-based
  • Accessible: Readable by a broad non-specialist audience (in other words please avoid too much academic jargon) and try to use stories, examples
  • Additional: Adds depth, new insights or detail to existing knowledge/research
  • Radical: Tackles the structural roots of critical issues
  • Propositional: Does not just critique, but also puts forward just alternatives where relevant
  • TNI's styleguide can be found here in English and here in Spanish
  • Do not include references in brackets within the text eg (Abramson, 2011) in the academic style. As we first publish online and then as a printable PDF, please hyperlink the text pointing to the reference AND provide an endnote with the full reference in Harvard style. You may also provide a bibliography at end of essay instead.
  • Please do not overdo it on the endnotes (no more than 40 for each essay) – use it mainly for referring to facts/evidence that may be surprising, questioned or challenged.
  • Please send as .doc file or .docx file or Open/Libre Office equivalent for written texts, pdf for artistic submissions
  • 5 June Submission of pitches
  • 20 June Pitches approved for submission of full essay
  • 23 September Submission of full essay
  • 3 October Decision on whether essay approved for final report or published as PDF
  • 17 October Author conference
  • October/November Review, second draft, final copyedits
  • 16 December Final draft
  • January Preparation of promotion, syndication etc
  • End of January Publication of essays

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capitalism essay 300 words


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    2. Those whose pitches are chosen will be asked to submit an essay. The top 4-5 essays will be selected for the report by the Editorial Panel. 3. Authors of the selected essays will be invited to a 'virtual' authors conference to both present their work and give constructive feedback on one other essay. 4.