idealism[ī dē′əl iz′əm]
- The definition of idealism is believing in or pursuing some perfect vision or belief.
An example of idealism is the belief of people who think they can save the world.
- behavior or thought based on a conception of things as they should be or as one would wish them to be; idealization
- a striving to achieve one's ideals
- imaginative treatment in art that seeks to show the artist's or author's conception of perfection; representation of imagined types, or ideals
- Philos. any of various theories which hold that:
- things exist only as ideas in the mind rather than as material objects independent of the mind
- things in the material world are actually manifestations of an independent realm of unchanging, immaterial models or forms
Origin of idealismFrench idéalisme or German idealismus
- The act or practice of envisioning things in an ideal and often impractical form.
- Pursuit of one's ideals, often without regard to practical ends.
- Idealized treatment of a subject in literature or art.
- Philosophy The theory that the object of external perception, in itself or as perceived, consists of ideas.
(countable and uncountable, plural idealisms)
First attested 1796, from ideal + -ism.