I see we have this tag, but I have no idea what qualifies for that. There is "Social Politics" journal, but it's basically a feminist journal.

Social Politics is a leading feminist journal that publishes original and cutting edge scholarship on gendered politics and policies in a global context. The journal’s mission is to stimulate and reflect interdisciplinary conversations, intersectional analyses and international approaches.

And we obviously have tags for and already. And even the unqualified . So what is "social politics" about?

Maybe it was intended to be social policy?

The Malcolm Wiener Center for Social Policy at Harvard University describes social policy as "public policy and practice in the areas of health care, human services, criminal justice, inequality, education, and labor".

The discussion of 'social policy' in the United States and Canada can also apply to governmental policy on social issues such as tackling racism, LGBT issues (such as same-sex marriage) and the legal status of abortion, guns, euthanasia, recreational drugs and prostitution.

Isn't that a bit broad for a single tag?

Since after four days after me asking the above, nobody seem to have a clear idea what the tag should be about (given the lack of an upvoted answer so far), should we delete it?

If so, how should we go about it? Just detag the questions? Per one of the global-meta threads [indirectly] linked by JJJ, it looks like that's the recommended procedure when less than 50 questions are tagged with a tag that's going to be deleted. (There are 36 questions under this tag presently.) The alternative seems to be for mods to "burinate" the tag, i.e. just delete the tag itself.

  • politics.stackexchange.com/questions/6190/… It appears that the owner of this question might've created the tag based on the fact that they have high rep and are the first user of it Commented Oct 24, 2019 at 16:29
  • Here they talk about social politics but I'm not entirely sure what their definition is. They talk about it in relation to 19th Century Germany.
    – JJJ Mod
    Commented Oct 24, 2019 at 20:36
  • @JJJ: given that the tag was created by a US user (see Alex's comment), it was probably not having Germany in mind. Commented Oct 24, 2019 at 20:37
  • @Fizz yea it's only a small excerpt that I found, it seems to be from the International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences which is a reference work published in 2015 (with an American editor, fwiw). Now that I look a bit more closely, it seems that previous links has many excerpts referring to the term.
    – JJJ Mod
    Commented Oct 24, 2019 at 20:40
  • @JJJ: on some of the other excerpts it seems to be used a synonym for social policies. Commented Oct 24, 2019 at 20:43
  • 2
    @Fizz yea I'd say it's sufficiently ambiguous to better not have it as a tag here. Perhaps turn this into a burination request?
    – JJJ Mod
    Commented Oct 24, 2019 at 20:43
  • 1
    I've looked to the burination guide here. That seems a bit overkill to me, though it's probably best to bring it to the attention of the community before continuing. Ideally, a title change (adding burination to the tile) is done and a [featured] tag is added by a mod. Then see if there is opposition and set a criterion for when to start (e.g. 12 net votes on your question). Maybe best to talk about this with a mod informally in chat first, see what they think.
    – JJJ Mod
    Commented Oct 30, 2019 at 19:16
  • 1
    @AlexRobinson Here is some response from the user who (probably) created the tag.
    – Martin
    Commented Nov 1, 2019 at 8:56

3 Answers 3


It seems the tag could be used to ask about the politics of society; essentially + Politics SE would be equivalent to .

I see nothing special about "social politics" that distinguishes it from "society" for the purpose of classifying questions on Politics SE.

could be made a synonym of .

Three other tags of interest are:

None of the five tags mentioned has excerpts; so it is likely that some questions could be retagged to something other than .


Generally speaking, social politics means 'political' processes that occur outside the context of established governance: e.g., corporate politics, political organizing, opinion formation and manipulation, influence peddling... It's a fairly well-defined area in political science and political theory, and certainly something of interest for political questions.


The tag "social-politics" can be attached to many things -- from the influence of the political opinions expressed by people in a position of authority in the early life of an individual, such as parents, older brothers or sisters, grandparents, teachers, etc -- to the ongoing influence of radio stations, newspapers, television, and social media that an individual pays attention to. If the power of the message comes from the authority of the messenger over the individual or the reputation of the messenger, rather than from the quality of the message itself, then it is part of social-politics.

Social-politics is also an appropriate label when a politician is influenced by "optics", such as a desire to appear "strong" and for that reason to prefer a military option to solve a problem, anticipating a helpful effect on the opinions of random, uninformed voters within the politician's own country, while ignoring the worldwide effects of military action.

Note: the title of the question seems to be completely neutral, but the body seems to be more of a critique suggesting that the tag shouldn't exist, rather than a clarification of the text that fits into the title space for the question. For the benefit of those who agree with the point of view expressed in the critique, the following is an attempt at humor or comedy that is a kind of deadpan answer to the question ...

Contrast may enlighten. Consider a non-social alternative to what is usually social: a witness being questioned in a courtroom. Typically, if we ignore the judge, jury, and other observers of the questioning, we have at least two people: a witness and a different person who is questioning the witness.

Here's a dramatization involving one person doing the questioning and also answering the questions as a witness. It shows an example of a non-social alternative to what is usually social:

(Courtroom scene from the 1971 comedy movie "Bananas":) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I4zP7247W7o

We could consider Peter Sellers in the movie "Dr. Strangelove", but he is the same actor playing different roles, and we would be looking for somebody recognized within the story of the film -- by all of the other characters in the film -- as being one person, with that one person working on a variety of tasks or within a variety of professions simultaneously.

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