If the government has complete and absolute power over the people, that’s totalitarianism. This is a repressive, unfree type of society.

A democracy is a society in which people have a say in their government and elect their leaders. The opposite is totalitarianism: a totalitarian society is usually ruled by a dictator, and there is very little or no freedom. In totalitarianism, the government controls almost every aspect of life. There is no free speech or freedom of the press: certain religions and ideas may be banned. George Orwell’s novel 1984 was a brilliant look at a world of totalitarianism.

Definitions of totalitarianism
  1. noun

    a form of government in which the ruler is an absolute dictator (not restricted by a constitution or laws or opposition etc.)

    Caesarism, Stalinism, absolutism, authoritarianism, despotism, dictatorship, monocracy, one-man rule, shogunate, tyranny
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    police state

    a country that maintains repressive control over the people by means of police (especially secret police)
    type of:

    autarchy, autocracy

    a political system governed by a single individual

  2. noun

    the principle of complete and unrestricted power in government

    absolutism, totalism
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    type of:

    ideology, political orientation, political theory

    an orientation that characterizes the thinking of a group or nation

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