Religion Past and Present

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Ideological Criticism
(257 words)

[German Version]

In critical/Western Marxism, ideological criticism is the criticism of ideas and discourses that obscure or misrepresent the true, emancipatory interests of social agents. If thought and social being do not coincide, as K. Marx argued, ideas may serve the dominant order and legitimate and sustain relations of domination. Ideological criticism thereby encompasses an epistemology for testing true and false knowledge and a critical theory of human freedom in society. Central to Western Marxism (cf. G. Lukács), ideological criticism draws on a negative or cr…

Cite this page
Scott, Peter, “Ideological Criticism”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 17 May 2022 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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