Before 1848, large sectors of socialism did not expect anything from democracy, because they stood outside politics. In spite of their quarrels, these schools of thought agreed on the generalization of associations, as a remedy to the "dissociation" (P. Leroux) brought about by the triumph of industry and money. All that was needed was to combine passions (Fourier), creative minds and productive abilities (Saint-Simon), or mutual bonds (Proudhon). Unlike the neo-babouvists who had inherited Babeuf's experience and advocated the seizure of political power by organized mass violence, all the above-mentioned thinkers believed in the supremacy of morals: a new world would be born less out of necessity than by an ethical impetus. Some even hoped that socialism could be founded (funded, actually) by generous enlightened bourgeois, on a small scale at first, and then develop as the rest of society would follow its example, political power having little or nothing to do with it: therefore there was no need for revolution.
This is neither a critique of politics nor of democracy.
The communist perspective is anti-political, not a-political.