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Ideological Hegemony

  • By: Christine M. Spinetta
  • In: Encyclopedia of Health Communication
  • Edited by: Teresa L. Thompson
  • Subject:Public Health Education & Health Promotion, Health Psychology, Health Communication

Ideological hegemony occurs when an individual takes part in reinforcing power structures and societal ideas willingly, even when these structures and ideas are harmful or silencing for those without access to power. This concept has been built upon Antonio Gramsci's (1891–1937) work The Prison Notebooks, in which he explored the ideological negotiations that play out within the dynamics of hegemony. Gramsci, a political theorist and politician, wrote while in prison during the Fascist regime in Italy. Ideological hegemonies explain the relationship of coercion and consent as embedded in socioculture and can be used to study the interaction between prevailing ideologies and communicative practices in regard to health. Using methods such as discourse analysis, one can discover the ideological dimensions of health phenomena such as the ...

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