An ideology is a collection of normative beliefs and values that an individual or group holds for other than purely epistemic reasons.[1] The term is especially used to describe a system of ideas and ideals which forms the basis of economic or political theory and policy.[2] In political science it is used in a descriptive sense to refer to political belief systems.[3] In social science there are many political ideologies.

The term was coined by Antoine Destutt de Tracy, a French Enlightenment aristocrat and philosopher, who conceived it in 1796 as the "science of ideas" during the French Reign of Terror by trying to develop a rational system of ideas to oppose the irrational impulses of the mob. However, in contemporary philosophy it is narrower in scope than that original concept, or the ideas expressed in broad concepts such as worldview, The Imaginary and in ontology.[4]

In the sense defined by French Marxist philosopher Louis Althusser, ideology is "the imagined existence (or idea) of things as it relates to the real conditions of existence".

Etymology and history

The term "ideology" was born during the Reign of Terror of French Revolution, and acquired several other meanings thereafter.

The word, and the system of ideas associated with it, was coined by Antoine Destutt de Tracy in 1796,[5] while he was in prison pending trial during the Terror. The word was created by assembling the words idea, from Greek ἰδέα (near to the Lockean sense) and -logy, from -λογία. He devised the term for a "science of ideas" he hoped would form a secure foundation for the moral and political sciences. He based the word on two things: 1) sensations people experience as they interact with the material world; and 2) the ideas that form in their minds due to those sensations. He conceived "Ideology" as a liberal philosophy that would defend individual liberty, property, free markets, and constitutional limits on state power. He argues that among these aspects ideology is the most generic term, because the science of ideas also contains the study of their expression and deduction.[6]

The coup that overthrew Maximilien Robespierre allowed Tracy to pursue his work.[6][5]

Tracy reacted to the terroristic phase of the revolution (during the Napoleonic regime) by trying to work out a rational system of ideas to oppose the irrational mob impulses that had nearly destroyed him.

Napoleon Bonaparte came to view 'Ideology' a term of abuse, which he often hurled against his liberal foes in Tracy's Institutional. According to Karl Mannheim's historical reconstruction of the shifts in the meaning of ideology, the modern meaning of the word was born when Napoleon used it to describe his opponents as "the ideologues". Karl Marx adopted this negative sense of the term and used it in his writings (he described Tracy as a "fischblütige Bourgeoisdoktrinär", a fishblooded bourgeois doctrine).[7]

Tracy's major book, The Elements of Ideology, was soon translated into the major languages of Europe, and in the next generation, when post-Napoleonic governments adopted a reactionary stance, influenced the Italian, Spanish and Russian thinkers who had begun to describe themselves as "liberals" and who attempted to reignite revolutionary activity in the early 1820s (these included the Carlist rebels in Spain, the Carbonari societies in France and Italy, and the Decembrists in Russia).

In the century after Tracy, the term ideology moved back and forth between positive and negative connotations.

(Perhaps the most accessible source for the near-original meaning of ideology is Hippolyte Taine's work on the Ancien Régime (the first volume of "Origins of Contemporary France"). He describes ideology as rather like teaching philosophy by the Socratic method, but without extending the vocabulary beyond what the general reader already possessed, and without the examples from observation that practical science would require. Taine identifies it not just with Destutt De Tracy, but also with his milieu, and includes Condillac as one of its precursors. (Destutt de Tracy read the works of Locke and Condillac while he was imprisoned during the Reign of Terror.))

The term "ideology" has dropped some of its pejorative sting, and has become a neutral term in the analysis of differing political opinions and views of social groups.[8] While Karl Marx situated the term within class struggle and domination,[9][10] others believed it was a necessary part of institutional functioning and social integration.[11]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Ideologie
Alemannisch: Ideologie
العربية: أيديولوجيا
aragonés: Ideolochía
asturianu: Ideoloxía
azərbaycanca: İdeologiya
تۆرکجه: ایدئولوژی
বাংলা: ভাবাদর্শ
Bân-lâm-gú: Ì-sek hêng-thài
башҡортса: Идеология
беларуская: Ідэалогія
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Ідэалёгія
български: Идеология
bosanski: Ideologija
brezhoneg: Ideologiezh
català: Ideologia
čeština: Ideologie
Cymraeg: Ideoleg
dansk: Ideologi
Deutsch: Ideologie
eesti: Ideoloogia
Ελληνικά: Ιδεολογία
español: Ideología
Esperanto: Ideologio
euskara: Ideologia
فارسی: ایدئولوژی
Fiji Hindi: Bichardhara
føroyskt: Hugmyndafrøði
français: Idéologie
Frysk: Ideology
galego: Ideoloxía
한국어: 이념
हिन्दी: विचारधारा
hrvatski: Ideologija
Ilokano: Ideolohia
Bahasa Indonesia: Ideologi
íslenska: Hugmyndafræði
italiano: Ideologia
Basa Jawa: Idhéologi
къарачай-малкъар: Идеология
ქართული: იდეოლოგია
қазақша: Идеология
Kiswahili: Itikadi
kurdî: Îdeolojî
Кыргызча: Идеология
Latina: Ideologia
latviešu: Ideoloģija
lietuvių: Ideologija
Limburgs: Ideologie
Lingua Franca Nova: Ideolojias political
magyar: Ideológia
македонски: Идеологија
მარგალური: იდეოლოგია
مازِرونی: ایدئولوژی
Bahasa Melayu: Ideologi
монгол: Идеологи
မြန်မာဘာသာ: ဒဿနဗေဒ
Nederlands: Ideologie
norsk: Ideologi
norsk nynorsk: Ideologi
occitan: Ideologia
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Mafkura
ਪੰਜਾਬੀ: ਵਿਚਾਰਧਾਰਾ
پنجابی: آئیڈیالوجی
Piemontèis: Ideologìa
polski: Ideologia
português: Ideologia
Qaraqalpaqsha: İdeologiya
română: Ideologie
русиньскый: Ідеолоґія
русский: Идеология
саха тыла: Идеология
Scots: Ideology
shqip: Ideologjia
Simple English: Ideology
slovenčina: Ideológia
slovenščina: Ideologija
Soomaaliga: Aragti
српски / srpski: Ideologija
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Ideologija
suomi: Ideologia
svenska: Ideologi
Tagalog: Ideolohiya
татарча/tatarça: Идеология
Türkçe: İdeoloji
Türkmençe: Aňyýet
українська: Ідеологія
اردو: خیالیت
ئۇيغۇرچە / Uyghurche: ئىدېئولوگىيە
Tiếng Việt: Ý thức hệ
文言: 意理
Winaray: Idolohiya
吴语: 意識形態
ייִדיש: אידעאלאגיע
粵語: 意識形態
Zazaki: İdeolociy
žemaitėška: Ideuoluogėjė
中文: 意識形態