The term socialism was first introduced by Henri de Saint-Simon (1760-1825), the French social theorist also credited with the advent of Christian socialism and what would later become labelled as "utopian socialism." The term itself refers to a collective mode of production and political economy.
While the meaning of the term socialism has varied throughout history, it generally refers to the co-operative management and the collective or shared ownership of the means of production. Early socialists in France, such as François-Noël Babeuf and Auguste Blanqui, played important roles as activists and theorists following the French revolution. They, along with others like Charles Fourier and Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, were important figures for the renewed elaboration of socialism by Karl Marx during the 19th century.