Compiled by Ralph Dumain

1. What does “ideology” mean to you?

2. What are the various ways the term is used?

3. What is the history (and pre-history) of the concept, from De Tracy (1797) on?

4. Is ideology bad, good, neutral?

5. Is “ideology” bad faith, or just a deceptive veil of appearances?

6. If bad faith, is ideology primarily a deception of others, or of oneself?

7. Can true beliefs be used ideologically? (In other words: one’s relationship to one’s ideas)

8. Are ideologies explicit or tacit?

9. Is ideology primarily a system of ideas or beliefs, or an embodied structure of social practices?

10. How does social position affect ideology? What do people in different social positions share ideologically? How do they differ? What different sorts of real knowledge do they have?

11. How is the intelligentsia affected by ideology? Are intellectuals more or less susceptible to ideological trends than others?

12. How does ideology affect the way people process information?

13. Should the term “ideology” be or not be restricted to (a) explicit belief and value systems, (b) distorted conceptions of reality, (c) the whole mental and cultural universe, the commonsense world of appearances in which we live, prior to scientific reflection?

14. Is philosophy ideological?

Ideology Study Guide

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Uploaded 26 August 2001

©2001 Ralph Dumain