Definition of problematic in English:

problematic

adjective

  • 1Constituting or presenting a problem or difficulty.

    ‘the situation was problematic for teachers’
    • ‘And because of the problematic nature of this general metaphysics, the strategy of this discussion will have to be somewhat different.’
    • ‘Perhaps the most problematic aspect of contemporary nature photography is what is not in the frame.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Like people who hoard possessions, animal hoarders often lack insight into the problematic nature of their behavior.’
    • ‘The problematic software programme controls the town centre traffic lights in connection with recently installed sensors.’
    • ‘The problematic nature of the concepts ‘Art Brut’ or ‘Outsider Art’ is once more exposed by a case such as his.’
    • ‘That said, no study of crime can ignore recorded criminal statistics, if only to highlight their partial and problematic nature.’
    • ‘Changes to the Constitution have proved somewhat problematic in the past.’
    • ‘Blurring the distinction between slave and free makes more complicated and problematic the nature of legal status.’
    • ‘Her analysis captures the problematic nature of the self in late modernity and presents it in stark and provocative relief.’
    • ‘Thus, the problematic nature of eyewitness reports was explicitly acknowledged by the U.S. Supreme Court.’
    • ‘Poverty is presented as an issue of problematic behaviour and low self-esteem, rather than of not having enough money.’
    • ‘In reality, the moral implications in such a world are no more problematic or complex than they are in the current one.’
    • ‘He was a pioneer in designing programmes for captive elephant care, and in the capture and control of problematic animals.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    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
    1. 1.1 Doubtful or questionable.
      • ‘But the more questions you ask about that, the more problematic it becomes.’
      • ‘But it is also a problematic question since historical scholars have by no means come to any agreement on its answer.’
      • ‘The stories are all an attempt to answer Akhila's problematic question: can a woman stay single and be happy at the same time?’

noun

  • A thing that constitutes a problem or difficulty.

    ‘the problematics of artificial intelligence’
    • ‘They had set a number of fundamental discursive premises that effectively circumscribed much of the subsequent political problematics.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Turning to Molière, Braider examines tensions obtaining between text and performance in Amphytrion, a play that thematizes the problematics of doubles.’
    • ‘The play is generally considered to stand alongside the work of Henry Miller for its insightful portrayal of the problematics of the American dream.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Contrasts in points of view also emphasize the problematics of drawing racial and cultural lines of ‘division.’’
    • ‘The central problematics of feminist empiricism can be captured in two apparent paradoxes.’
    • ‘Thus, the problematics of multicultural representation parallel broader questions about the political constitution of categories of difference.’

Origin

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

Pronunciation

problematic

/ˌpräbləˈmadik/