Sociology Index


Dominant ideology thesis is associated with Karl Marx. Dominant ideology means the principal ideas, values and morals in a given society. Similar to Instrumentalist Marxism. The dominant ideology thesis asserts that working-class subordination in capitalist societies is largely the outcome of the cultural dominance achieved by capitalism and the capitalist class. According to Karl Marxs' the dominant ideology thesis, ruling ideas in a given society are always the ideas of the ruling social group. Dominant ideology denotes the attitudes and beliefs, values and morals shared by the majority. As a mechanism of social control, the dominant ideology frames how the majority of the population think about the nature of and their places in society; of being in and of a social class.

Ruling Group And Ruling Ideas Give Rise To Dominant Ideology

The institutions and culture of a society are widely permeated by dominant ideology. According to dominant ideology thesis, there is in most societies a set of belief which dominates all others and which, through its incorporation in the consciousness of subordinate classes, tends to inhibit the development of radical political dissent.

Dominant ideology thesis does not claim that there is only one dominant ideology present within a society, or that dominant ideology is without challenge. Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels said that the ideas of the ruling class are, in any age, the ruling idea applied to every social class in service to the interests of the ruling class. Hence, in the revolutionary practice, the slogan: The dominant ideology is the ideology of the dominant class summarises its function as a revolutionary basis.

The concept of hegemony is capable of becoming a version of the dominant ideology thesis, which would bring it closer to the theories of both Louis Pierre Althusser and the Frankfurt School. - An introduction to theories of popular culture. - By Dominic Strinati.

What is germane to upwards conflation, and also much more pervasive in neo-Marxism, is what has been aptly termed the 'dominant ideology thesis'. - Culture and agency: the place of culture in social theory - by Margaret Scotford Archer - 1996. 

Abstract: This study assesses predictions from the dominant ideology thesis and theory of group interest concerning the relationship between socioeconomic status and racial solidarity across three domains of racial ideology. Racial solidarity indicators, such as the perception of discrimination, transcend individual socioeconomic-status in constructing a group-based racial viewpoint. The subjective social class measure, occupational prestige, tends to promote differences favorable to racial solidarity.

Cultural Domination and the Reaction to It - Janusz Mucha, Instytut socjologii universytetu Mikolaja Kopernika, Torun. The text is not about the debate on the cultural domination or a criticism of theories of domination, nor is it a dialogue with them. The following issues are discussed in the article: ethnic domination and its mechanisms; global approach to cultural domination and the center and periphery debate; debates on the repressive culture of rationality of the Frankfurt School, postmodernism and post-structuralism; debate on economic, political and ideological domination, including the “dominant ideology thesis” and Pierre Bourdieu’s structuralism.

Depictions of Murder in Maine: The Dominant Ideology Thesis - John Riley. Deviant Behavior, 40:4, 417-434.
Abstract: Recent research suggests that popular depictions of crime reflect and reinforce a dominant ideology in which criminals are viewed as rational actors who bear individual responsibility for crime. While most of the depictions examined here describe crime as a matter of individual responsibility, this analysis found that many media depictions of Maine’s murderers include content that is sympathetic to the offender and some accounts raise questions about the effectiveness of police services, mental health care and related social services.

The Dominant Ideology and Brazilian Tabloids: News Content in Class-Targeted Newspapers  - Frederick Schiff, Sociological Perspectives. Abstract: A content analysis of the press in a middle-sized city in Brazil finds that the news agenda and local scope of the tabloid dailies are oriented to the working classes. Working-class oriented tabloids tend to be the strongest ideological supporters of capitalist legitimacy and continued elite control in the midst of rapid industrialization and newspaper competition in the provincial capital of Curitiba. More serious papers oriented toward the middle class tend to allow for less hegemonic points of view in the period after the end of the military dictatorship. Stories with dominant ideological themes are played prominently in all newspapers and, in addition, are run more frequently throughout the tabloids.

WORKERS, FIRMS, AND THE DOMINANT IDEOLOGY: Hegemony and Consciousness in the Monopoly Core - Steven Peter Vallas - The Sociological Quarterly. Theorists of work and class relations have argued that organizational processes within the monopoly 'core' induce employees to identify with the firm and consent to the social relations of production. The adequacy of this 'hegemony' thesis is evaluated using data from two Bell operating companies, whose workers hold relatively high-paying primary sector jobs and are exposed to a strong corporate culture. The data indicate that hegemony theory inflates the role of ideological mechanisms in the reproduction of managerial control and underestimates workers' capacity to form a critical consciousness of the employment relationship.

The Dominant Ideology Thesis - Nicholas Abercrombie, Bryan S. Turner
British Journal of Sociology, Vol. 29, No. 2 (Jun., 1978). Abstract: A good deal of research and theory construction in the sociology of knowledge relies on the 'dominant ideology thesis'. We propose a number of reinterpretations of dominant ideology thesis which at present systematically ignores the effect of the dominant ideology on the dominant class. There is evidence that the subordinate classes are not incorporated into the dominant ideology and that, by contrast, the dominant classes are deeply penetrated by and incorporated within the dominant belief system. There is no well marked dominant ideology in the later phases of capitalism. The dominant ideology has the function of maintaining the dominant class's control over property in feudalism and early capitalism. The changing nature of the dominant class in terms of a partial divorce between ownership and control means that the dominant ideology ceases to be crucial for the coherence of the dominant class.

An investigation of dominant ideologies operating within the text historia by Australian playwright Noëlle Janaczewska, Nicole G. Kelly, Edith Cowan University. Abstract: The 'reality' of contemporary Australia is based upon hegemonic perceptions of society, which categorise and classify subjects and groups. These perceptions are based upon dominant ideologies that make sense of and order the world in a particular way. Where 'minority' groups are concerned, their experience, their way of life and their way of 'being' is seen to deviate from the hegemonic perception; they don't fit into the dominant ideology and are therefore constituted as 'different', which through Western polarisation sees them marginalised as the 'Other' seen as somehow more deviant than those who fit the dominant ideology. Noelle Janaczewska's play Historia (1996), presents us with these minority groups, which she juxtaposes with the dominant ideologies.