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parapraxis


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In psychoanalysis, a minor error in speech or action, such as a slip of the tongue, a slip of the pen, an action slip, or a slip of memory. In his book The Psychopathology of Everyday Life (1901, Standard Edition, VI), Sigmund Freud (1856–1939) advanced the theory that such errors are not random but often represent fulfilments of unconscious wishes, and the book is crammed with anecdotal examples. Parapraxes can be analysed for possible clues to repressed thoughts and desires by a method similar to dream analysis. Freud's original German word for this phenomenon was Fehlleistung, combining two ordinary words and meaning simply a faulty performance. Also called a motivated error, and (colloquially) a Freudian slip. See also acting out (2), déjà vu, Moses illusion, yolk phenomenon. parapraxes pl. [From Greek para beside or beyond + praxis a deed, from prassein to do]

Subjects: Psychology.


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