An example of catharsis is talk therapy.
- purgation, esp. of the bowels
- the purifying of the emotions or relieving of emotional tensions, esp. by art; concept applied originally by Aristotle to the effect of tragic drama on the audience
- Psychiatry the alleviation of fear, problems, and complexes by bringing them to consciousness or giving them expression
Origin of catharsisModern Latin from Classical Greek katharsis, purification from kathairein, to purify from katharos, pure
- Medicine Purgation, especially for the digestive system.
- A purifying or figurative cleansing of the emotions, especially pity and fear, described by Aristotle as an effect of tragic drama on its audience.
- A release of emotional tension, as after an overwhelming experience, that restores or refreshes the spirit.
- Psychology a. A technique used to relieve tension and anxiety by bringing repressed feelings and fears to consciousness.b. The therapeutic result of this process; abreaction.
Origin of catharsisNew Latin from Greek katharsis from kathairein to purge from katharos pure
- (drama) A release of emotional tension after an overwhelming vicarious experience, resulting in the purging or purification of the emotions, as through watching a dramatic production (especially a tragedy).
- Any release of emotional tension to the same effect, more widely.
- A purification or cleansing, especially emotional.
- (psychology) A therapeutic technique to relieve tension.
- (medicine) Purging of the digestive system.
From Ancient Greek κάθαρσις (katharsis, “cleansing, purging”), from καθαίρω (kathairō, “I cleanse”). Coined in the dramatic-emotional sense by Aristotle.