liberalism

Liberalism in politics favors social progress, through the agency of government, while liberalism in economics favors a free and open market, without government interference.

Liberalism in contemporary politics is said to fall on the left-hand side of the political spectrum, which is why its adherents are sometimes called, collectively, "the Left." (Adherents of "conservatism" are called "the Right," and they are generally strongly opposed to liberalism.) "Political liberalism," which may favor more government regulation, is not interchangeable with "economic liberalism," which favors less government regulation, a strategy political conservatism often agrees with.

Primary Meanings of liberalism

1.
n
a political orientation that favors social progress by reform and by changing laws rather than by revolution
2.
n
an economic theory advocating free competition and a self-regulating market
Full Definitions of liberalism
1

n a political orientation that favors social progress by reform and by changing laws rather than by revolution

Types:
neoliberalism
a political orientation originating in the 1960s; blends liberal political views with an emphasis on economic growth
Type of:
ideology, political orientation, political theory
an orientation that characterizes the thinking of a group or nation
2

n an economic theory advocating free competition and a self-regulating market

Type of:
economic theory
(economics) a theory of commercial activities (such as the production and consumption of goods)

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