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Fanaticism (from the Latin adverb ''fānāticē'' ren-''fānāticus''; enthusiastic, ecstatic; raging, fanatical, furious is a belief or behavior involving uncritical
zeal Zeal may refer to: * Zealotry, fanaticism ** Zeal of the convert * Diligence, the theological virtue opposite to acedia * Zeal (horse), race horse * Zeal (surname) * Zeal (web), an internet directory * Zeal Monachorum, a village in Devon * South Z ...
or an obsessive
enthusiasm In modern usage, enthusiasm refers to intense enjoyment The term ''happiness'' is used in the context of mental or emotion Emotions are biological states associated with all of the nerve systems brought on by neurophysiological change ...

enthusiasm
. Philosopher
George Santayana Jorge Agustín Nicolás Ruiz de Santayana y Borrás, known in English as George Santayana (; December 16, 1863 – September 26, 1952), was a philosopher A philosopher is someone who practices philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the st ...

George Santayana
defines ''fanaticism'' as "redoubling your effort when you have forgotten your aim". The fanatic displays very strict standards and little tolerance for contrary ideas or opinions. Tõnu Lehtsaar has defined the term ''fanaticism'' as the pursuit or defence of something in an extreme and passionate way that goes beyond normality.
Religious fanaticism Religious fanaticism is a pejorative designation used to indicate uncritical zeal or obsessive enthusiasm which is related to one's own, or one's group's, devotion to a religion – a form of human fanaticism which could otherwise be expressed ...
is defined by blind faith, the persecution of dissidents and the absence of reality. Fanaticism is a result from multiple cultures interacting with one another. Fanaticism occurs most frequently when a leader makes minor variations on already existing beliefs, which then drives the followers into a frenzy. In this case, fanaticism is used as an adjective describing the nature of certain behaviors that people recognize as cult-like. Mead referred to the style of defense used when the followers are approached. The most consistent thing presented is the priming, or preexisting, conditions and mind state needed to induce fanatical behavior. Each behavior is obvious once it is pointed out; a closed mind, no interest in debating the subject of worship, and over reaction to people who do not believe. In his book ''Crazy Talk, Stupid Talk'',
Neil Postman Neil Postman (March 8, 1931 – October 5, 2003) was an American author, educator, Media studies, media theorist and cultural critic, who eschewed technology, including Personal computer, personal computers in school and Cruise control, cruise co ...
states that "the key to all fanatical beliefs is that they are self-confirming....(some beliefs are) fanatical not because they are 'false', but because they are expressed in such a way that they can never be shown to be false." The behavior of a fan with overwhelming enthusiasm for a given subject is differentiated from the behavior of a fanatic by the fanatic's violation of prevailing
social norm Social norms are shared standards of acceptable Acceptability is the characteristic of a thing being subject to acceptance for some purpose. A thing is acceptable if it is sufficient to serve the purpose for which it is provided, even if it is f ...
s. Though the fan's behavior may be judged as odd or eccentric, it does not violate such norms. A fanatic differs from a
crank Crank may refer to: Mechanisms * Crank (mechanism), in mechanical engineering, a bent portion of an axle or shaft, or an arm keyed at right angles to the end of a shaft, by which motion is imparted to or received from it * Crankset, the componen ...
, in that a crank is defined as a person who holds a position or opinion which is so far from the norm as to appear ludicrous and/or probably wrong, such as a belief in a
Flat Earth The flat Earth model is an archaic and scientifically disproven conception of Earth's shape as a plane Plane or planes may refer to: * Airplane or aeroplane or informally plane, a powered, fixed-wing aircraft Arts, entertainment and media ...

Flat Earth
. In contrast, the subject of the fanatic's obsession may be "normal", such as an interest in religion or politics, except that the scale of the person's involvement, devotion, or obsession with the activity or cause is abnormal or disproportionate to the average.


Types

*
Consumer A consumer is a person or a group who intends to order, orders, or uses purchased goods, products, or Service (economics), services primarily for personal, social, family, household and similar needs, not directly related to entrepreneurial or bu ...
fanaticism – the level of involvement or interest one has in the liking of a particular person, group, trend, artwork or idea *
Emotional Emotions are psychological state A mental state is a state of mind that an agent is in. Most simplistically, a mental state is a mental condition. It is a relation that connects the agent with a proposition. Several of these states are a combi ...
fanaticism *
Ethnic An ethnic group or ethnicity is a grouping of people A people is any plurality of person A person (plural people or persons) is a being that has certain capacities or attributes such as reason Reason is the capacity of consciously a ...

Ethnic
or
racial supremacist Supremacism is the belief that a certain group of people is superior to all others. The supposed superior people can be defined by age, gender Gender is the range of characteristics pertaining to, and differentiating between femininity ...
fanaticism *
Leisure Leisure has often been defined as a quality of experience or as free time. Free time is time Time is the continued sequence of existence and event (philosophy), events that occurs in an apparently irreversible process, irreversible s ...

Leisure
fanaticism – high levels of intensity, enthusiasm, commitment and zeal shown for a particular leisure activity *
Nationalistic Nationalism is an idea and movement that holds that the nation should be congruent with the State (polity), state. As a movement, nationalism tends to promote the interests of a particular nation (as in a in-group and out-group, group of peo ...
or
patriotic Patriotism or national pride is the feeling of love, devotion, and sense of attachment to a homeland A homeland is the concept of the place where a cultural, national, or racial identity had formed. The definition can also mean simply on ...

patriotic
fanaticism *
Political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, or other forms of Power (social and political), power relations between individuals, such as the distribution of res ...

Political
,
ideological An ideology () is a set of belief A belief is an attitude Attitude may refer to: Philosophy and psychology * Attitude (psychology) In psychology Psychology is the science of mind and behavior. Psychology includes the study of ...
fanaticism. *
Religious fanaticism Religious fanaticism is a pejorative designation used to indicate uncritical zeal or obsessive enthusiasm which is related to one's own, or one's group's, devotion to a religion – a form of human fanaticism which could otherwise be expressed ...
– considered by some to be the most extreme form of
religious fundamentalism Fundamentalism usually has a religious Religion is a - of designated and practices, , s, s, , , , , or , that relates humanity to , , and elements; however, there is no scholarly consensus over what precisely constitutes a religion. ...
. Entail promoting religious views *
Sports Sport pertains to any form of competitive Competition is a rivalry A rivalry is the state of two people or groups engaging in a lasting competitive relationship. Rivalry is the "against each other" spirit between two competing sides. ...

Sports
fanaticism – high levels of intensity surrounding sporting events. This is either done based on the belief that extreme fanaticism can alter games for one's favorite team (Ex: Knight Krew), or because the person uses sports activities as an ultra-masculine "proving ground" for brawls, as in the case of
football hooliganism Football hooliganism, soccer hooliganism or more commonly football riot, constitutes violent or belligerent behaviour perpetrated by spectators at association football events. Football hooliganism normally involves conflict between gangs, in E ...
.


See also

* ''
The Anatomy of Revolution ''The Anatomy of Revolution'' is a 1938 book by Crane Brinton outlining the "uniformities" of four major political revolutions: the English Civil War, English Revolution of the 1640s, the American Revolution, American, the French Revolution, Fren ...
'' * '' Antifanaticism: A Tale of the South'' *
Enthusiasm In modern usage, enthusiasm refers to intense enjoyment The term ''happiness'' is used in the context of mental or emotion Emotions are biological states associated with all of the nerve systems brought on by neurophysiological change ...

Enthusiasm
*
Extremism Extremism is "the quality or state of being extreme" or "the advocacy of extreme measures or views". The term is primarily used in a political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making dec ...
*
Falsifiability Falsifiability is a standard of evaluation of scientific theories and hypotheses that was introduced by the philosopher of science Karl Popper in his book The Logic of Scientific Discovery, ''Logik der Forschung'' (1934). He proposed it as the ...
*
Fanboy A fan or Fanaticism, fanatic, sometimes also termed an aficionado or enthusiast, is a person who exhibits strong interest or admiration for something or somebody, such as a celebrity, a sport, a sports team, a genre, a politician, a book, a mo ...
*
Fixation (psychology) Fixation (german: Fixierung) is a concept Concepts are defined as abstract ideas A mental representation (or cognitive representation), in philosophy of mind Philosophy of mind is a branch of philosophy that studies the ontology and nature of ...
* M. Lamar Keene *
Obsession (psychology) Obsession may refer to: Psychology * Celebrity worship syndrome, obsessive addictive disorder to a celebrity's personal and professional life * Fixation (psychology), a persistent attachment to an object or idea * Idée fixe (psychology), a preo ...
* ''
The True Believer ''The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements'' is a non-fiction book authored by the American social philosopher Eric Hoffer. Published in 1951, it depicts a variety of arguments in terms of applied world history and social psy ...
'' **
True-believer syndrome True-believer syndrome is an informal or rhetorical term used by M. Lamar Keene in his 1976 book ''The Psychic Mafia''. Keene used the term to refer to people who continued to believe in a paranormal event or phenomenon even after it had been prov ...
*
Zealotry The Zealots were a political movement A political movement is a collective attempt by a group of people to change government policy or social values. Political movements are usually in opposition to an element of the status quo  and are of ...


References


Further reading

* Haynal, A., Molnar, M. and de Puymege, G. ''Fanaticism. A Historical and Psychoanalytical Study''. Schoken Books. New York, 1987 * Rudin, J.''Fanaticism. A psychological Analysis''. University of Notre Dame Press. London, 1969. * Collins, Jack. "Real Times". University of Santa Barbara. California. 1993.
Беляев, И.А. Религиозный фанатизм как иллюзорная компенсация недостаточности духовно-душевных составляющих целостного мироотношения
/ И.А. Беляев // Вестник Челябинской государственной академии культуры и искусств. — 2011. — No. 4 (28).— С. 68–71. {{Authority control Problem behavior Barriers to critical thinking