Sociology Index

DOMINANT IDEOLOGY THESIS

DOMINANT IDEOLOGY THESIS is associated with Karl Marx and that each historical era is dominated by the intellectual ideas of its ruling class. Dominant ideology is the ideas, values and morals in a given society. Like Instrumentalist Marxism, dominant ideology thesis asserts that working-class subordination in capitalist societies is the outcome of the cultural dominance achieved by capitalism and the capitalist class.

For Marx, the ruling ideas in a given society are always the ideas of the ruling social group. The institutions and culture of a society are widely permeated by dominant ideology which provides the key institutions and values of the society with an appearance of naturalness and inevitability.

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. It is not claimed that there is only one ideology present within a society, or that dominant ideology is without challenge.

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 - Margaret Scotford Archer.

Marx's envisages a process of class conflict in society that develops the contest between dominant ideologies and the ideas or counter ideologies that challenge them.

THE DOMINANT IDEOLOGY THESIS, by Nicholas Abercrombie, Stephen Hill,... Emmison Journal of Sociology.1983; 19: 158-161

The Dominant Ideology Thesis, Abercrombie, N. and B.S. Turner (1978) British Journal of Sociology 29(2): 149–170  

The Dominant Ideology Thesis - Nicholas Abercrombie, Bryan S. Turner
British Journal of Sociology, Vol. 29, No. 2 (Jun., 1978), pp. 149-170
A good deal of research and theory construction in the sociology of knowledge relies on the 'dominant ideology thesis'.

The Dominant Ideology Thesis suggests that there is in most societies a set of belief which dominates all others. In most societies the apparatus of transmission of the dominant ideology is not very efficient and is typically directed at the dominant rather than the subordinate class. We conclude that 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. In late capitalism the dominant ideology thesis ceases to be crucial for the coherence of the dominant class.

The Dominant Ideology and Brazilian Tabloids: News Content in Class-Targeted Newspapers  - Frederick Schiff, Sociological Perspectives, Vol. 39, No. 1 (Spring, 1996).

WORKERS, FIRMS, AND THE DOMINANT IDEOLOGY: Hegemony and Consciousness in the Monopoly Core - Steven Peter Vallas - The Sociological Quarterly - Vol 32 Page 61 - Mar 1991 - Vol 32 Issue 1.
Theorists have argued that organizational processes within the monopoly 'core' induce employees to identify with the firm and consent to the social relations of production.

SOCIOECONOMIC STATUS AND RACIAL GROUP INTERESTS AMONG BLACK AMERICANS -  Shelton, Jason; Wilson, George.
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. 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 following issues are discussed in the article: ethnic domination and its mechanisms; global approach to cultural domination and the center/periphery debate; debates on the repressive culture of rationality of the Frankfurt School, postmodernism and post-structuralism; debate on economic, political and dominant ideology.