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A mental mechanism operating outside of and beyond conscious awareness by which certain external attributes, attitudes, or standards are taken within oneself.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


the acceptance and incorporation of the standards or beliefs of other persons, or of society, by the individual. Internalization is a basic concept in FREUD's theory of personality development. The child's conscience (SUPEREGO) is formed by internalizing society's MORES, as represented by the parents’ personal values and standards. As suggested by this psychodynamic usage, the total acceptance of beliefs and values is usually implied when the concept is employed in a more general way. However, some expressed attitudes or behaviours may be based on social pressures, such as CONFORMITY, and involve compliance rather than internalization. See also SOCIALIZATION, OVERSOCIALIZED CONCEPTION OF MAN.
Collins Dictionary of Sociology, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2000
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



transfer inward from without. The concept of internalization entered psychology as a result of the work of the French sociological school (E. Durkheim and others), which linked internalization with the concept of socialization, the adoption of basic categories of individual consciousness from the sphere of social ideas. In the cultural-historical theory of the Soviet psychologist L. S. Vygotskii, the idea of internalization acquired fundamental importance for psychology. One of the basic premises of this theory is that any genuinely human form of the psyche initially evolves as an external, social form of human communication and only then, as a result of internalization, becomes a psychological process for an individual person. Stages of internalization have been traced in detail in works devoted to “intellectual actions.” In such works it has been demonstrated that internalization is not a simple transfer to action on the level of ideas (J. Piaget, Switzerland) but represents the formation of an internal structure of consciousness. Through its accompaniment by several other action changes, such as generalization or reduction, internalization leads to the formation of a new concrete psychological process.


Durkheim, E. “Sotsiologiia i teoriia poznaniia.” Novye idei v sotsiologii, collection 2. St. Petersburg, 1914.
Vygotskii, L. S. hbrannye psikhologicheskie issledovaniia. Moscow, 1956.
Vygotskii, L. G. Razvitie vysshikh psikhicheskikh funktsii. Moscow, 1960.
Gal’perin, P. Ia. “K ucheniiu ob interiorizatsii.” Voprosy psikhologii, 1966, NO. 6.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
A subsidiary with little autonomy may be forced to implement Headquarters HR practices but this can lead to counterproductive when it comes to internalization of the practices because organizational members may view the implementation of the practices as having been forced upon the unit.
2 shows the bacterial adherence, internalization and opsonophagocytosis among various clinical isolates of GAS.
Guided by these purposes, the current study tests an overarching hypothesis predicting that Taiwanese adolescents' body dissatisfaction and drive for thinness will vary with television viewing, self-esteem, internalizations of the societal thin ideal, and the BMI index.
(2002) also used Becker et al.'s (1996) identification and internalization measures.
Further, clinicians might note that this internalization may not solely reflect consumption of media that venerates male muscularity, but also, pressures emanating from an internalization of the muscular ideal among girls.
To observe the internalization of pGH in porcine hepatocytes, cells were treated with 100 ng/mL FITC-pGH for 0, 15, 30, 60, 75 and 90 min.
In this context, the point of plastic surgery can be said to be the endeavor to redress a person's failure to acknowledge how she sees herself due to body image discrepancies that may lead to the development of thin ideal internalization (Nouri, Hill, and Orrell-Valente, 2011; Ura and Preston, 2015; Chaker, Chang, and Hakim-Larson, 2015) and increase the need to undergo a plastic surgery repeatedly (Sarwer, 2002; Posavac, and Posavac, 2002).
1% and 0.1%, respectively, depending on the extraction procedure inhibit the internalization of [[beta].sub.2]-adrenergic receptors ([[beta].sub.2]AR) under stimulating conditions followed by an increased [[beta].sub.2]AR binding and an elevated cAMP production in vitro (Greunke et al., 2015; Sieben et al., 2009).
Our study reveals that social capital and relational conflict among family members do not affect PD directly, as existing theory suggests, but only through the internalization of knowledge among family members.
So, this is when youngster can start to focus on these body trends, known as body image internalization (4).
Internalization of religious motivation is associated with increased subjective well-being.