What is the difference between right wing and left wing?


Quick Answer

According to The Political Compass, the left-right political spectrum generally implies a collectivist versus libertarian view of economic policy, respectively. However, it is also suggested that the left-right political spectrum doesn't adequately describe social politics, which would more accurately fall on an authoritarian versus libertarian political spectrum.

Continue Reading

Full Answer

This two-dimensional theory of the political compass is supported by a number of scholars, including Herbert McClosky and Dennis Chong of Cambridge University. McClosky and Chong also state that left-wing and right-wing leaders and political ideologues share many characteristics in their style of governance and partisan support. They note that many leaders who are considered to be authoritarian by the general public have instituted similar, if not identical, policies relating to civil liberties, democratic ideals and the use of force, regardless of where they stand on the left-right spectrum.

The Wikipedia article titled "political spectrum" includes a number of different scholars' assessments of multidimensional political spectra. In the introductory section of the article, the American left is described as having individualistic social views and communitarian economic views, whereas the American right is described as having communitarian social views and individualistic economic views. These axes roughly correlate with The Political Compass' two axes.

Some examples of left-wing ideologies include Stalinism, Maoism, socialism, progressivism, anarcho-communism and social liberalism. Examples of right-wing ideologies include fascism, Nazism, conservatism, neoconservatism, neoliberalism, libertarianism, paleoliberalism, and anarcho-capitalism.

Learn more about Law

Related Questions