Definition of problematic in English:

problematic

adjective

  • Constituting or presenting a problem:

    ‘the situation was problematic for teachers’
    • ‘Thus, the problematic nature of eyewitness reports was explicitly acknowledged by the U.S. Supreme Court.’
    • ‘It will do well to escape the controversy of its problematic production, which has raised questions about the scrutiny afforded to public funding of film in Scotland.’
    • ‘Poverty is presented as an issue of problematic behaviour and low self-esteem, rather than of not having enough money.’
    • ‘As it is in the witness cases that the courts have most directly confronted the problematic nature of psychiatric illness claims, it is with those cases that we begin.’
    • ‘Her analysis captures the problematic nature of the self in late modernity and presents it in stark and provocative relief.’
    • ‘In reality, the moral implications in such a world are no more problematic or complex than they are in the current one.’
    • ‘The problematic nature of the concepts ‘Art Brut’ or ‘Outsider Art’ is once more exposed by a case such as his.’
    • ‘He was a pioneer in designing programmes for captive elephant care, and in the capture and control of problematic animals.’
    • ‘Blurring the distinction between slave and free makes more complicated and problematic the nature of legal status.’
    • ‘Although they have the choice of return, it would be a more problematic and difficult move than for British immigrants.’
    • ‘One of the most controversial and problematic aspects of globalisation is the homogenisation that tends to accompany it.’
    • ‘Changes to the Constitution have proved somewhat problematic in the past.’
    • ‘That said, no study of crime can ignore recorded criminal statistics, if only to highlight their partial and problematic nature.’
    • ‘And because of the problematic nature of this general metaphysics, the strategy of this discussion will have to be somewhat different.’
    • ‘This was a show that presented the problematic areas of representation of people outside of one's socio-political group.’
    • ‘The problematic nature of these terms has been discussed at length elsewhere.’
    • ‘Like people who hoard possessions, animal hoarders often lack insight into the problematic nature of their behavior.’
    • ‘Perhaps the most problematic aspect of contemporary nature photography is what is not in the frame.’
    • ‘The problematic software programme controls the town centre traffic lights in connection with recently installed sensors.’
    • ‘It seems to be solid enough, but it is problematic and tricky, you're never as sure of it as you'd like to be.’
    difficult, hard, problematical, taxing, troublesome, tricky, awkward, controversial, ticklish, complicated, complex, knotty, thorny, prickly, involved, intricate, vexed
    paradoxical, puzzling, baffling, perplexing
    sticky, like herding cats
    dodgy
    View synonyms

noun

  • A thing that constitutes a problem:

    ‘the problematics of artificial intelligence’
    • ‘Demonstrating that all the world is a stage, Thurman places his protagonist in a context of masks, theatres, duplicities, and lies in order to consider the problematics of racial and sexual identity.’
    • ‘Thus, the problematics of multicultural representation parallel broader questions about the political constitution of categories of difference.’
    • ‘The story resonates with the crucial problematics of the exilic experience: the distinction between home and exile, as well as between danger and safety, becomes complicated and problematized.’
    • ‘Contrasts in points of view also emphasize the problematics of drawing racial and cultural lines of ‘division.’’
    • ‘The play is generally considered to stand alongside the work of Henry Miller for its insightful portrayal of the problematics of the American dream.’
    • ‘Turning to Molière, Braider examines tensions obtaining between text and performance in Amphytrion, a play that thematizes the problematics of doubles.’
    • ‘The central problematics of feminist empiricism can be captured in two apparent paradoxes.’
    • ‘This problematics, however much it touches the core of a crucial argument, ceases precisely because it is already circumscribed by legalistic notions of loyalty.’
    • ‘Gerstler's poems highlight the problematics of written discourse, requiring yet thwarting the operations of both memory and understanding.’
    • ‘They had set a number of fundamental discursive premises that effectively circumscribed much of the subsequent political problematics.’

Origin

Early 17th century: via French from late Latin problematicus, from Greek problēmatikos, from problēma (see problem).

Pronunciation:

problematic

/prɒbləˈmatɪk/