If All Stories are Political, then What is Politics?

Anyone who believes that probably doesn’t know that the definition of politics is, really.

I would state that all stories are philosophical in nature, rather than political, because how on earth does The Codex Seraphianus push a message on state affairs and government systems?

If you’re going to say “the personal is political”, that’s like saying “water is wet” at this point. Of course the laws of the place you live in affect how you live. It’s a basic fact of life.

The only explanation I accept is that all forms of art can be used to push a political message. But how well that is done, and how much misinterpretation goes into varies wildly. Just look at Germania and you will see what I mean.


The problem is that so many government systems have tried to rule every aspect of our lives, that yes, a story trying to be phylisophical ends up turning into a political argument because politicians think that their moral and religious beliefs count as law when it comes to running a country. They don’t know where to draw the line, and the people have to suffer for it.

For example, debates on whether a doctor should be legally punished for performing gender afirming surgery on a trans person should not be a thing. It has nothing to do with politics as you define it because someone’s gender identity has nothing to do with running a country. But politicians think that their religious beliefs and bigotry allow them to make anyone with a different view on such matters face legal consequences.

The line is just as blurred for people trying to tell a story. For example, an author may only be trying to show through their writing a concept as simple as “be kind to others” but then people who want to nitpick will claim it’s teaching something like toxic positivity and submissive obedience, which will escelate to how the government is just trying to teach us to be compliant so we won’t get angry and rise up against them, and then it quickly spirals into a political debate.

It’s obnoxious and I find it ridiculous, but because politics has never been able to stay in it’s lane and influences every part of our lives (whether they have the actual right to or not), it’s easy to claim that every story out there has a political agenda of some sort. Even if that agenda doesn’t actually have anything to do with politics at all by the actual definition.


In its purest form, storytelling is about philosphy. All other bs comes from how people interact with it.

Essentially, yes. I wouldn’t even say storytelling is about phylisophy. It’s about entertainment. Phylisophy is an added bonus.

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Well, yeah in a sense, but every story reflects the worldview of the writer in some way-you mostly see the philosophy through the themes explored

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I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone say that all writing is political, but according to my WordWeb Thesaurus published by Princeton U iirc, the word political has several definitions, one of which is:

Of or relating to views about social relationships involving authority or power

So by that definition, a lot of writing is unexpectedly political, but of course, not all writing. ¯\_(ﭢ)_/¯


That definiton would say that all stories anout abusive relationships are political. Gotta tell Dark Romance authors about that.

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I don’t think all stories are political. Some may hold a political agenda behind the words, but it’s usually not like that. However, the majority of fantasy, science fiction, and even some contemporaries do have politics in them—whether they’re upfront or hidden. This is usually when you’re dealing with an unjust system and corrupt government, which let’s face it, is in a good portion of fantasy and sci-fi stories. Some of the most famous ones have it in there like Hunger Games, Red Queen, Divergent, Harry Potter, Unwind, the Hate U Give, Wings of Ebony, and so much more. Then again, these are all YA and a good portion of YA are set to tear down corrupt governments. xD

I think when some people say “it’s political” to a story that isn’t political, they might be meaning using specific themes to “aim toward a political agenda.” For instance, using LGBT+ themes. LGBT+ is not political because it’s a human right to be whoever you want to be and love whoever you want to love (within reason, of course). However, conservatives (from what I hear anyway) often call stories with LGBT+ themes a “political agenda” because the author “is trying to force their beliefs” onto the reader, if that makes any sense. :woman_shrugging:


I’ve mostly seen this idea of “all media is political” from blue checkmarks, some of which are pro-eugenics and with authoritarian leanings.

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