Identity: 2 Types of identity: Personal Identity: collection of traits that make you unique when compared to other people. Collective Identity: the traits that you share with other people as a member of a larger society group. Factors shaping Identity: Beliefs and values help to shape identity and are usually shared (collective identity) in a society Ideological beliefs will be shaped by your individual and collective identity. They form a set of principles that guide how a society should work Ideology: A systematic set of beliefs that provides a picture of the world that a group of people accept as true. In general, there is a strong ideological difference between those who value individualism and collectivism. For example, the capitalist ideology values individualism and includes private property and free choice whereas communists value economic equality and collectivism.
A. Characteristics of Ideology: I.Nature of human beings: Human nature – essentially do we believe people are good or bad will shape our ideological perspective Hobbes, Locke and Rousseau’s ideas shaped the ideological perspectives of Fascism, capitalism, communism (and others) Your will create belief and value system based upon the notion of ‘good or bad’. For example: Hitler believed people needed to be controlled because of their instinctive human nature to be evil whereas in a capitalistic society (like the United States) people have more freedoms based upon the belief that they are naturally good. Example: Although most communist states have very strict controls, despite believing people are inherently good, it is done with the idea that they are used only on those who do not voluntarily commit to the general will of the people.
A. Structure of Society Social structures of any society reflect the beliefs and values of that society Formal Structures: usually controlled by a government or rule system o Role of each gender – if in the written rule system of government (can also be a more informal structure) o Economics – rich vs. Poor role of government: equality, more equal, personal incentive/initiative Informal Structures: ‘unwritten’ socially acceptable behaviours o Gender Roles: Until the late 1970s it was acceptable to pay women less for doing the same work as mean (informal). Trudeau had a Royal Commission look into this and created a law (formal) that prevented this from happening (Equal pay for Equal work). B. Interpretation of History: Events from the past will shape today’s ideology “don’t remember the past, condemned to repeat it’ It becomes the society’s interpretation of the past events that make them significant to the people and the ideological perspective held by the society itself Example: Germany – East – did not learn about Hitler, West – learned only sparse information about WWII Example: 1930s – Mussolini (Italy) invaded Abyssinia (Ethiopia) to account for their loss in a previous war, to gain back some of the prestige that was lost because of that previous loss.
C. Vision of the future: Where you want your society to be in the future will affect the ideological beliefs held by that society Example: Recession - Obama has instituted more government interventions into the capitalistic system than seen in a long time – wants his country to get out of the recession and to prosper again and it is his belief (and his party’s) that this is the most effective way to do this II. Themes of Ideologies: Progressivism (progressive ideology/state etc.) Ideologies that advocate for moderate political and social reforms. Use government action to get reforms (changes to laws) Support social justice and rights for workers