deferred action

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In psychoanalysis, a term used frequently by Sigmund Freud (1856–1939), though never defined by him, apparently to denote the revision of memories to fit in with new experiences or the attainment of later stages of development. Freud used the German word Nachträglichkeit, meaning the state or condition of being after the event or having hindsight, and the usual translation as deferred action may be slightly misleading. The French psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan (1901–81) was the first to draw attention to the importance of the concept in Freud's writings. See also false memory, reconstructive memory.

Subjects: Psychology.

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