noun plural but singular or plural in construction pol·i·tics \ˈpä-lə-ˌtiks\

: activities that relate to influencing the actions and policies of a government or getting and keeping power in a government

: the work or job of people (such as elected officials) who are part of a government

: the opinions that someone has about what should be done by governments : a person's political thoughts and opinions

Full Definition of POLITICS

a :  the art or science of government
b :  the art or science concerned with guiding or influencing governmental policy
c :  the art or science concerned with winning and holding control over a government
:  political actions, practices, or policies
a :  political affairs or business; especially :  competition between competing interest groups or individuals for power and leadership (as in a government)
b :  political life especially as a principal activity or profession
c :  political activities characterized by artful and often dishonest practices
:  the political opinions or sympathies of a person
a :  the total complex of relations between people living in society
b :  relations or conduct in a particular area of experience especially as seen or dealt with from a political point of view <office politics> <ethnic politics>

Origin of POLITICS

Greek politika, from neuter plural of politikos political
First Known Use: circa 1529

Other Government and Politics Terms

agent provocateur, agitprop, autarky, cabal, egalitarianism, federalism, hegemony, plenipotentiary, popular sovereignty, socialism
POLITICS Defined for Kids


noun plural pol·i·tics \ˈpä-lə-ˌtiks\

Definition of POLITICS for Kids

:  the activities, actions, and policies that are used to gain and hold power in a government or to influence a government
:  a person's opinions about the management of government Hint:Politics can be used as a singular or a plural in writing and speaking. <Politics has always interested me.> <The country's politics have changed.>

Word Root of POLITICS

The Greek word polis, meaning city or community, and the related word polītēs, meaning citizen, give us the roots polis and polit. Words from Greek polis and polītēs have something to do with cities or communities or the citizens who live in them. A metropolis is the most important city in an area. The police are a group that enforces the law so as to protect citizens. Politics is the science and art of governing citizens.


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