ambivalence

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ambivalence

(ămbĭv`ələns), coexistence of two opposing drives, desires, feelings, or emotions toward the same person, object, or goal. The ambivalent person may be unaware of either of the opposing wishes. The term was coined in 1911 by Eugen BleulerBleuler, Eugen
, 1857–1939, Swiss psychiatrist. He taught (1898–1927) at the Univ. of Zürich, serving concurrently as director of Zürich's Burghölzi Asylum.
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, to designate one of the major symptoms of schizophreniaschizophrenia
, group of severe mental disorders characterized by reality distortions resulting in unusual thought patterns and behaviors. Because there is often little or no logical relationship between the thoughts and feelings of a person with schizophrenia, the disorder has
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, the others being autismautism
, developmental disability resulting from a neurological disorder that affects the normal functioning of the brain. It is characterized by the abnormal development of communication skills, social skills, and reasoning. Males are affected four times as often as females.
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 and disturbances of affect (i.e., emotion) and of association (i.e., thought disorders). Bleuler felt that there were normal instances of ambivalence, such as the feeling, after performing an action, that it would have been better to have done the opposite; but the normal person, unlike the schizophrenic, is not prevented by these opposing impulses from deciding and acting. In Freudian psychoanalysis, ambivalence was described as feelings of love and hate toward the same person. This specific meaning has attained common usage by psychiatrists and psychoanalysts.

ambivalence

[am′bi·və·ləns]
(psychology)
The coexistence of contradictory emotions, attitudes, ideas, or desires with respect to a particular person, object, or situation.
References in periodicals archive ?
In this section the full implications of the term ambivalence should grow clear.
There is no ambivalence in its attitude toward Clifton: He was a traitor, and deserved condemnation.
In etiquette books, the change in this tug-of-war or ambivalence can be followed in many ways.
Of course, one might point to many other barriers to women's emancipation, but without taking this ambivalence into account, it will be hard fully to understand or explain why women's present day struggle against having to work a 'second shift',(42) has been so weak for so long.