Interpellation is a concept developed by the Marxist philosopher Louis Althusser in his book On Ideology , which describes how (state) ideology is embedded in the subjects through so-called Ideological State apparatuses, such as the school system and the police. Althusser suggests that as the subject recognizes that an invocation is addressed to him, he is interpellated with the ideology of which the cry is expressed. The classic example is the policeman shouting at you in the street: "Hey, you without lights, drive to the side!" which you recognize is addressed to you and thus interpellated with the ideology (which is ideological in that it according to Althusser expresses the ideology of the dominant class through the state apparatus) that the law enforcement has the authority to give you a fine, and thus that you must comply the laws of the country. In simple layman's terms, the term describes the movement of values, traditions, culture and worldviews and more from being 'outside' a person, to being embedded in the person's way of thinking and acting.
The term has been used by several international cultural researchers and philosophers, including Slavoj Žižek who inscribes the term in his psychoanalyses, sociologist and actor-network theorist John Law and gender theorist Judith Butler .