Coercion is the use of violence or other kinds or force, or the threat of such force, to dictate the actions of others. Libertarians and some others have a special pejorative meaning of coercion, implying that the use or threat of force is one of the ones they disapprove of.

Rights and systems of law are generally backed by the threat of force.

Coercion is often used to political ends, both by states and by other entities. Coercion (primarily in the specialized sense) is opposed by anarchistss, libertarianss and pacifistss. Nevertheless, coercion remains one of the most basic forms of motivation, and continues to be used for that purpose.

Some consider that corporations may exert coercive force through control over scarce resources, such as food, water, housing, and others which individuals would consider essential to maintaining their lives, as in the concept of the hydraulic economy.

See also: hydraulic economy, intimidation, libertarian socialism