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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.


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.



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.


References in periodicals archive ?
The Geisinger study, which is currently available online, is considered the first and only study to examine internalized weight bias in relation to post-surgical weight loss success in adults.
The scientists have found that internalized homophobia was a significant predictor of binge drinking, while experiencing violence or victimization was marginally associated with drinking large amounts of alcohol in a short period of time, while those living with their parents were less likely to report binge drinking.
To assess the extent to which religious variables predicted internalized outcomes, a canonical correlation analysis was conducted using religious variables (gathered through RES, Quest Scale, SWBS) as "predictors of the internalizing outcome variables (shame, guilt, internalized homophobia) in order to analyze the multivariate shared relationship between the two variable sets" (p.
The phenomenon of internalizing anti-gay attitudes and experiencing negative views of self is referred to as internalized homophobia.
As a result, most men internalized the dilemma of failure and created a success-oriented vocabulary of "real" Americans they could emulate: those "driving wheels," "self-made men," "business men," and "go-ahead men" who constituted the winners in American society.
Gamboa wants the death to be no more than an irrational projection of Ennis' fear--proof that his internalized homophobia has ruined his life.
My acceptance of the offer to work at the camp was an extension of my own internalized homophobia.
women religious internalized and undertook the renewal that inevitably would bring them into conflict with church officials.
The majority of the women Golden interviewed internalized the blame for their situations without recognizing the macro forces at play in their lives.
However, youths exposed to parental victimization internalized and externalized to a greater degree, according to caregiver report, than those children who were not exposed.
She touches on almost every aspect of the African Diaspora: colonization, class struggles, immigration, internalized racism, ancestral traditions and religion, to name a few.
Although true in any educational setting, these reminders that learning takes place only when concepts and skills are internalized are especially important when a music teacher gives practice advice.