Hegemony

or, as I prefer to think of it, ‘weaponised common-sense’.

The trouble with hegemony is that it can be used to imply that there is a truth the poor cultural dopes don’t get, that they are simply labouring (in every sense) under ‘false consciousness’.  Which is the teensiest bit patronising, of course…

I like this description from  Levy and Egan

hegemony rests on a broad base of consent, which relies on coalitions and compromises that provide a measure of political and material accommodation with other social groups, and on ideologies that convey a mutuality of interests. Gramsci rejected deterministic and economistic interpretations of Marx, which proposed that ideational superstructures were mere reflections of the economic base. Instead, Gramsci understood the realm of culture and ideology to be somewhat autonomous. Hegemony is rooted in the institutions of civil society, such as the church, the academy, and the media, which play a central role in ideological reproduction, providing legitimacy through the assertion of moral and intellectual leadership and the projection of a particular set of interests as the general interest.
(Levy and Egan, 2003: 805-6)

Levy, D.L. and Egan, D. 2003. A neo-Gramscian Approach to Corporate Political Strategy: Conflict and Accommodation in the Climate Change Negotiations. Journal of Management Studies, Vol. 40, (4), pp.803-29.

 

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