Ideology: A Very Short Introduction [#095]
Ideology: A Very Short Introduction [#095]


  • A clear presentation of the controversies surrounding ideology
  • An examination of the major theories of ideology and the ways in which they have enriched our comprehension of ideology
  • An argument for the importance of ideology in understanding the nature of politics
  • Acquainting the reader with the latest methods of analysing ideologies from a wide range of disciplines
  • Explains why ideologies deserve respect as a major form of political thinking

Ideology is one of the most controversial terms in the political vocabulary, exciting both revulsion and inspiration. This book examines the reasons for those views, and explains why ideologies deserve respect as a major form of political thinking. It investigates the centrality of ideology both as a political phenomenon and as an organizing framework of political thought and action. It explores the changing understandings of ideology as a concept, and the arguments of the main ideologies. By employing the latest insights from a range of disciplines, the reader is introduced to the vitality and force of a crucial resource at the disposal of societies, through which sense and purpose is assigned to the political world.


List of illustrations
1. Should ideologies be ill-reputed?
2. Overcoming illusions: how ideologies came to stay
3. Ideology at the crossroads of theory
4. The struggle over political language
5. Thinking about politics: the new boys on the block
6. The clash of the Titans: the macro-ideologies
7. Segments and modules: the micro-ideologies
8. Discursive realities and surrealities
9. Stimuli and responses: seeing and feeling ideology
10. Conclusion: why politics can’t do without ideology
References and further reading


Michael Freeden is Professor of Political Theory at the University of Nottingham and Emeritus Professor of Politics, University of Oxford. His books include The New Liberalism: An Ideology of Social Reform (Oxford, 1978); Liberalism Divided: A Study in British Political Thought 1914-1939 (Oxford, 1986); Ideologies and Political Theory: A Conceptual Approach (Oxford, 1996); Ideology: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford, 2003); Liberal Languages: Ideological Imaginations and 20th Century Progressive Thought (Princeton, 2005); The Political Theory of Political Thinking (Oxford, 2013), and The Oxford Handbook of Political Ideologies (co-edited, Oxford, 2013). He is the founder-editor of the Journal of Political Ideologies. In 2012 he was awarded the Sir Isaiah Berlin Prize for Lifetime Contribution to Political Studies by the UK Political Studies Association and the Medal for Science of the Institute of Advanced Studies, Bologna University.

This book, though physically small, is large in intellectual stature...For students of politics or lay readers wishing to know about ideology, one could not wish for a better text. It is a splendid model of consicison and clarity...an excellent little book that provides the best introduction available to the 'concept of ideology.' It is to be highly recommended. - Andrew Vincent, Contemporary Political Theory


ISBN : 9780192802811

Michael Freeden
160 ページ
111 x 174 mm
Very Short Introductions





Ideology: A Very Short Introduction [#095]

Ideology: A Very Short Introduction [#095]

Ideology: A Very Short Introduction [#095]