When we think of Oscar Wilde, we are most likely to recall one of his stories, such as "The Portrait of Dorian Gray" or perhaps, one of this pithy witticisms. But rarely do we pair Oscar Wilde and socialism.
Wilde wrote this essay in 1891 after reading the work of Peter Kropotkin. Kropotkin was the father of anarchist communism. He espoused a more decentralized economic system based on cooperation. The mutual support and voluntary cooperation had been shown to already exist in human society, Kropotkin wanted to encourage this. He believed a society, or nation, should be self-sufficient in its goods and foods and not relying heavily, or at all, on imports.
But while Kropotkin was more focused on economics and politics, in this essay, Wilde dives into more of a personal nature, the soul. But what does he have to say about the soul and its tenure under socialism? You will have to read to find that out. Oscar's essay is available online at Project Gutenberg and other sites.
“It is what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it (Oscar Wilde)."