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collective unconscious

(in Jungian psychology) inborn unconscious psychic material common to humankind, accumulated by the experience of all preceding generations.
Compare archetype (def 2).
Origin of collective unconscious
1915-20 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for collective unconscious
  • The ideas of both secret planes and flying saucers strike deep chords in the collective unconscious.
  • There are things about human consciousness that can not be explained such as the collective unconscious.
  • But it was the film's publicity, not the collective unconscious, that first elided the phrase.
  • It is no longer a personal but a transpersonal evil, arising from some kind of collective unconscious.
  • There is a dim twilight zone where high art, popular culture and the collective unconscious overlap with particular ordinariness.
British Dictionary definitions for collective unconscious

collective unconscious

(psychol) (in Jungian psychological theory) a part of the unconscious mind incorporating patterns of memories, instincts, and experiences common to all mankind. These patterns are inherited, may be arranged into archetypes, and are observable through their effects on dreams, behaviour, etc
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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collective unconscious in Medicine

collective unconscious col·lec·tive unconscious (kə-lěk'tĭv)
In Jungian psychology, a part of the unconscious mind that is shared by a society, a people, or all humankind. The product of ancestral experience, it contains such concepts as science, religion, and morality.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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collective unconscious in Culture

collective unconscious definition

Memories of mental patterns that are shared by members of a single culture or, more broadly, by all human beings; originally proposed by the psychologist Carl Jung to explain psychological traits shared by all people. He theorized that the collective unconscious appears as archetypes: patterns and symbols that occur in dreams, mythology, and fairy tales.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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