Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Wikipedia.


A general mechanism by which some mental representation comes to stand for some other thing, class of things, or attribute of something.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.



The notion that dreams provide an avenue for the expression of normally repressed desires while simultaneously disguising and censoring our real urges was systematically formulated by Sigmund Freud, the father of psychoanalysis. In Freud’s view, the purpose of dreams is to allow us to satisfy in fantasies the instinctual urges that society judges to be unacceptable, such as the urge to seduce or kill someone. If, however, we were to dream about an actual seduction or an actual assault, the emotions evoked by the dream would awaken us. So that our sleep is not continually disturbed by such dreams, the mind modifies and disguises their content so that strong emotions are not evoked. Freud referred to the process of censoring and transforming dream contents into less disturbing images as the dreamwork and explicitly identified five processes through which dreams are censored: displacement, condensation, symbolization, projection, and secondary revision.

In symbolization, as the name suggests, the repressed urge is acted out in a symbolic manner. During the late-nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in which Freud lived, overt expressions of sexuality were generally frowned upon in polite society. Hence many of Freud’s patients suffered from repressed sexual desires, and he was able to study many dreams in which these forbidden urges were covertly expressed. Freud found that almost anything long and protruding could represent a male organ, and anything concave and receptive could represent the female. Thus, a dream in which a male was pouring champagne out of a bottle into a glass held by a female might symbolize sexual intercourse. Even something more subdued, such as inserting a key into a keyhole, might have the same meaning, depending on the dreamer and on the other elements of the dream. Other kinds of repressed desires, particularly aggressive urges, can be expressed indirectly in dreams through the mechanism of symbolization.

The Dream Encyclopedia, Second Edition © 2009 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
And this is the second reason why technology does not lend itself to human symbolization. It does not even help us to make an effort to wrench ourselves free from a symbolic environment because in a technical society the symbolization was performed in advance and delivered to us by ourselves.
In order to get the symbolic law with different intervals division, [S.sub.1] was used to represent the total number of both 1 and 2, and S2 was used to represent the total number of both 0 and 3 in symbolization, and a new parameter [beta] was introduced and defined as [beta] = [S.sub.1]/([S.sub.1] + [S.sub.2]).
Map application programming interfaces (APIs) were released by third parties to meet the demand for interactive symbolization at the client.
But if reinstallation aims at a blissful forgetting, history is forensic, and rife with "symbolization." Installation photographs are, in this sense, the true medium driving reinstallation.
It must enable pupils to practise modes of mathematical thought such as abstraction, generalization, logical reasoning, proof and mathematical symbolization and to understand the power of such thinking.
According to Christ, "Religions centered on the worship of a male God create 'moods' and 'motivations' that keep women in a state of psychological dependence on men and male authority, while at the same legitimating the political and social authority of fathers and sons in the institutions of society." (1) In a similar vein, bearing in mind how the symbolization of God can be a constraint for the flourishing of women, Elizabeth A.
This can include die, symbolization, packaging piece parts, etc.
This collection of ten essays analyzes the phenomena of trust and distrust as processes of symbolization and representation rather than bounded or discrete phenomena.
The package in question had white ink symbolization applied on one side and black ink on the other.
Transcending the existing models of the readymade and the objet trouve--and jettisoning art's symbolic conventions--he turned to that mode of psychic symbolization that shapes the strangeness of the world into a strangeness we can recognize, because it is of our own making.