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[ak-tuh-viz-uh m] /ˈæk təˌvɪz əm/
the doctrine or practice of vigorous action or involvement as a means of achieving political or other goals, sometimes by demonstrations, protests, etc.
  1. a theory that the essence of reality is pure activity, especially spiritual activity, or process.
  2. a theory that the relationship between the mind and the objects of perception depends upon the action of the mind.
Origin of activism
1905-10; < German Aktivismus. See active, -ism Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for activism
  • She had returned to anarchist activism, but it was taking its toll on her.
  • This problem is compounded by the evolution of her views over five decades of activism.
  • His activism for world peace took considerable amounts of his time.
British Dictionary definitions for activism


a policy of taking direct and often militant action to achieve an end, esp a political or social one
Derived Forms
activist, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for activism

1920 in the political sense; see activist + -ism. Earlier (1907) it was used in reference to a philosophical theory.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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