View definitions for democracy


noun as in government in which people participate

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Example Sentences

The political winners ritually prosecuting the political losers is not the stuff of a mature democracy.

From Vox

America’s founders did not believe in either concept of democracy, so the fact that the hardboiled compromise between large and small states is inegalitarian did not bother them very much.

From Vox

What Strzok makes clear is that democracy depends on Washington getting with the program.

From Fortune

Head to your state’s elections website, spend some time learning how to vote early, and check “participate in democracy” off your to-do list.

It will also be crucial to strengthen democracy and safeguard human rights in response to increasing levels of violence across the region.

A second document was titled: “Gambia Reborn: A Charter for Transition from Dictatorship to Democracy and Development.”

Faal told the FBI that his group was trying “restore democracy to The Gambia and improve the lives of its people.”

Actually, the guessing game is over; the weddings have begun, as have weird attempts to circumvent our constitutional democracy.

Thomas Piketty raised the Big Questions this year about democracy and inequality.

Piketty only waves his hands around the all-important question of whether economic inequality undermines democracy.

He was so zealous a partisan of democracy, and of Cromwell, that the authorities frequently placed him in a straight jacket.

I have a strong reverence for traditions, and no taste whatever for democracy—that would be too long a step.

Democracy, let us grant it, is the best system of government as yet operative in this world of sin.

I had long ago adopted democracy as a good policy, so now I stopped to introduce myself.

He based this plan upon the premise that democracy would be more successful if greater numbers of individuals were educated.


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Frequently Asked Questions

What is another name for democracy?

Generally speaking, democracy is government by the people. More specifically, a democracy is a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected representatives under a system of free elections.

Many of the world’s democracies are also republics (in which people have the power and wield it through electoral representation). Sometimes, these are referred to as democratic republics.

The words democracy and republic are sometimes used interchangeably. The U.S. is typically considered, for all practical purposes, both a democracy (in a more general sense) and a republic (in a more specific, functional sense). Technically speaking, it can be considered a federal presidential constitutional republic or a constitutional federal representative democracy. (You can see why it’s easier to just call it a democracy.)

Sometimes, the word democracy is used in a very general way to mean political or social equality, or the state of a society where this equality has been formalized.

What are the different types of democracy?

Democracies are most commonly classified as one of two types: a direct democracy (which involves citizens directly governing) and a representative democracy (which involves citizens electing representatives to govern on their behalf).

Sometimes, democracies are classified or categories in other ways. They may be labeled as aggregative, deliberative, or radical, or as participatory, pluralist, or elite. There are many other adjectives that can be applied as well. Of course, democracies vary from place to place, and every democracy may not fit neatly into a particular category or system of classification.

What is the opposite of democracy?

Democracy is complex, and the word doesn’t have an exact opposite in the same way that words like hot and cold are opposites. But there are forms of government that are based on very different ideals or values—including those in which the people (the average citizens) do not hold any power.

The U.S. famously founded its representative democratic republic by breaking away from a monarchy, a system in which a monarch like a king or queen claims to wield power not from the consent of the people but based on divine right (lol).

Terms for systems of government in which power is held not by the people but by a single person or a small group include authoritarianism, totalitarianism, and despotism. More generally, such situations may be described as tyranny.

A specific government in which the power is held not by the people but by a single leader might be called a dictatorship or an autocracy.

There are also a lot of critical words that refer to a governmental system that is considered undemocratic in a specific way, such as plutocracy (rule by the wealthy) and oligarchy (rule by a powerful few).

Some people contrast democracy with systems like Communism or socialism, both of which also involve economic aspects. Such systems exist in many forms (both theoretically and in practice). They may be extremely different from democratic systems, but they may overlap in some ways. A country could be both socialist and democratic, for example.

What are antonyms (opposites) of democratic?

The word democratic can mean different things depending on whether it’s capitalized or not. Lowercase d democratic is a general term referring to things that involve or are based on democracy. Direct antonyms for this sense of democratic include undemocratic or antidemocratic.

In the U.S., Democratic with a capital D is used in the name of the Democratic Party, one of the two major U.S. political parties, along with the Republican Party. These two parties are typically seen as rivals, and some people may consider them opposites (though, just like everything else in politics, there are many people who disagree).

On this page you'll find 18 synonyms, antonyms, and words related to democracy, such as: equality, freedom, justice, commonwealth, egalitarianism, and emancipation.

From Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.