The Concepts of Ideology & Liberalism


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Ideology is a term used to explain how someone perceives the world. Its their beliefs, values and explanations on how the world operates. Like If you see people as naturally mean or naturally nice. Dominant ideology is a set of beliefs that everyone accepts and never really questions. These beliefs tend to centre around gender roles, the economy, and social standards. They can be the smallest things like believing you should have a coffee every morning to more serious things like hating an entire race or gender depending on where you are from.

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Liberalism is a very common dominant ideology. Liberalism centres on the values of individual liberty, equality and economic freedom. “Liberals typically believe that government is necessary to protect individuals from being harmed by others, but they also recognize that government itself can pose a threat to liberty.” (Minogue, Dagger, Ball, Girvetz, 2018, N.P.) Liberalism has evolved a lot since it’s origin in 19th century. “Classical liberalism is the idea that “individuals are inherently good” and that they don’t need to be restricted by laws. Laws in Classical liberalism are for restricting what governments can do.” (Willers, 2017, N.P.) after the world wars that changed to what we now know as modern liberalism. Where people are seen as “socially” good but can’t be trusted with economic or self-defence related freedoms. So those freedoms are restricted by the law.

The most common ideologies are political ideologies. (E.g. liberals, conservatives, Liberalism has a direct correlation with personal freedom These ideologies are passed down by many sources. (e.g. family, schools, communities.) family is a persons first form of interaction with an ideology. Most parents pass down their views and beliefs to their children. Those children after having a conscious understanding of these ideologies either end up accepting or rejecting their parents beliefs. Usually depending on how much they respect their parents thoughts. An example of this would be a closeted gay child from a christian conservative family. That person may love their parents but not their beliefs. Which almost forces them to reject that ideology. What I find most interesting about ideology is how it is used in the media. ideology is almost everywhere you look. Not just in the news and magazines but in movies an Tv.

Screen writers intentionally and unintentionally let their ideologies bleed through their work. Someones ideology can be shaped by a characters beliefs. An example of this is the 2012 aurora shooting. Which happened during a screening of The Dark Knight Rises. The man who murdered the people in the theatre told the police during an interrogation that he was the joker. Who happens to be the antagonist of the film prior to The Dark Knight Rises. This is a very extreme example of the way a character can play a part in shaping someones ideology but it shows how much the media influences us as people.

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