There's a specific, somewhat uncommon word I have in mind. I came across it some time ago, but I can't remember it and can't find it back. It perfectly, succinctly represents what I'm about to describe. Also, it's not edutainment.

The word is one you would use to describe a novel/game/movie/whatever which, as an accessory to its primary goal of entertaining the audience, also seeks to educate the audience about specific topics.

For example, imagine a political thriller where the audience comes away with some understanding of the inner workings of the U.S. senate. Or imagine a work of historical fiction that greatly deepens the audience's understanding of a particular aspect of the Korean War. Or a novel where the protagonist is a sumo wrestler, and the audience comes to learn a great deal about sumo culture as a byproduct of the storytelling.

  • I can picture exactly what you're taking about, but I don't think there's a specific word for it. I did a quick check of TVTropes, starting at Edutainment, and came up dry. The best they offer is "informative" or the label "E/I" (educational/informative).
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Mar 10, 2017 at 22:39
  • It's been about a year or two since I encountered the word, but I think there was a Wikipedia article about the word that explained the idea and provided some examples of works that fell into the category. Commented Mar 10, 2017 at 22:49
  • 3
    @Dan Bron: ... a quick check of TVTropes? Isn't that the ultimate oxymoron? Or is your browser running some kind of "anti-Tardis" extension? (to prevent time ceasing to exist once you enter the site! :) Commented Mar 11, 2017 at 0:44

2 Answers 2


Could the word you are looking for be didactic?

From Merriam-Webster didactic

a : designed or intended to teach

b : intended to convey instruction and information as well as pleasure and entertainment - didactic poetry

  • This is pretty good! A little broader than what I think OP is seeking, but helpful. +1.
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Mar 10, 2017 at 22:56
  • Thanks, I think that's the exact one! My description is slightly different, but that's likely due to my poor memory. I believe this is the Wikipedia article I mentioned in my other comment: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Didacticism Commented Mar 10, 2017 at 23:20
  • 1
    +1 I've never met the sense licensed as 'b'. Commented Mar 11, 2017 at 0:42

You can use the term educational with the connotation of:

tending or intended to educate, instruct, or inform:

  • an educational show on television.


  • But you wouldn't really call a political thriller which is only incidentally informative an "educational film", would you?
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Mar 10, 2017 at 22:42
  • @DanBron - I'd probably use educational fiction in that case.
    – user66974
    Commented Mar 10, 2017 at 22:44

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.