Key Terms: American Political Ideologies and Beliefs
Political Ideology Formation
- Political attitudes: The opinions people hold about the role of government and the specific programs and policies that their government should implement.
- Political culture: The combined set of political attitudes held by individuals within the same culture.
- Individualism: A social and political philosophy that promotes individual well-being over the well-being of society as a whole.
- Equality of opportunity: The belief that each person should have an equal chance at success and that no person should be limited by circumstances outside of her control.
- Equality of outcome: Having similar or equal results among individuals within a society; often contrasted with equality of opportunity.
- Free enterprise: The ability of individual people and businesses to make money with minimal interference by the government.
- Rule of law: The notion that everyone within a country, including government officials, are subject to its laws.
- Limited government: The belief that political officials and institutions should have significant constraints on their power.
- Political socialization: The process by which people form their political attitudes and beliefs.
- Social groups: Formal or informal groups of people who share similar characteristics and a common sense of identity.
- Generational effects: Significant historical or cultural events that can permanently affect the political attitudes of the people who lived through them.
- Life-cycle effects: Fluctuations in political beliefs that can occur as a result of life events that commonly occur at particular points in a typical lifespan.