Show Summary Details
Page of

(p. 1) 1. Introduction to ideology: Contesting the nature of the ‘good society’ 

(p. 1) 1. Introduction to ideology: Contesting the nature of the ‘good society’
(p. 1) 1. Introduction to ideology: Contesting the nature of the ‘good society’

Paul Wetherly

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD POLITICS TROVE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Politics Trove for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 27 January 2021

This chapter explains what ideology is, why ideology is seen as a ‘contested concept’, and what roles ideology plays in politics and society. In particular, it analyses the basic conception of ideology as a system of ideas involving a vision of the good society, a critique of existing society, and a notion of political action. It examines the relationship between ideology, politics, and policy; negative perceptions of ideology prevalent in political discourse; the idea that we are all ideologists; the components or building blocks of a basic conception of ideology; and the Marxist understanding of ‘ideology’ as false or misleading ideas. The chapter also considers whether there is an independent vantage point from which to assess the claims of rival ideologies. It concludes by reflecting on the problem of relativism and the link between ideology and globalization.

Access to the complete content on Politics Trove requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.