Socialism is historically interpreted as the nationalization of industry, conjoined with a planned economy. In this thesis, I argue against this interpretation of socialism, because the orthodox socialist institutionalization runs into detrimental problems concerning efficiency and liberty. I argue in favor of an ideological approach to socialism, meaning that socialism should be interpreted by its principles. These principles are based on an egalitarian normative framework, focusing on equality of opportunity for self-realization and welfare, as well as political influence. The thesis is concluded with a thorough explication of the contents of the principles and their possible application in contemporary society.