An example of an ideology is a candidate's statement about their beliefs.
- Archaic the philosophical study of the nature and origin of ideas
- Rare thinking or theorizing that is of an idealistic, abstract, or impractical nature; fanciful speculation
- the doctrines, opinions, or way of thinking of an individual, class, etc.; specif., the body of ideas on which a particular political, economic, or social system is based
Origin of ideologyFrench idéologie: see ideo- and -logy
Origin of ideologyFrench idéologie idéo- ideo- -logie -logy
Original meaning “study of ideas” (following the etymology), today primarily used to mean “doctrine”. For example “communist ideology” generally refers to “communist doctrine”; study of communist ideas instead being “communist philosophy”, or more clearly “philosophy of communism”; only rarely “ideology of communism”.
From French idéologie, from idéo- + -logie (equivalent to English ideo- + -logy). Coined 1796 by Destutt de Tracy. Modern sense of “doctrine” attributed to use of related idéologue (“ideologue”) by Napoleon Bonaparte as a term of abuse towards political opponents in early 1800s.