Last modified on 20 June 2014, at 03:38

uncanny

EnglishEdit

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PronunciationEdit

EtymologyEdit

From un- +‎ canny; thus “beyond one's ken,” or outside one's familiar knowledge or perceptions.

AdjectiveEdit

uncanny (comparative uncannier, superlative uncanniest)

  1. strange, and mysteriously unsettling (as if supernatural); weird
    He bore an uncanny resemblance to the dead sailor.
  2. (UK dialectal) Careless.
  3. (Can we clean up(+) this sense?) (psychology, psychoanalysis, Freud) Simultaneously familiar and foreign, often uncomfortably so; translation of Freud's German unheimlich ("no longer secret").
    • 2011, Espen Dahl, Hans-Gunter Heimbrock, In Between: The Holy Beyond Modern Dichotomies, page 99:
      [The uncanny is] something that was long familiar to the psyche and was estranged from it only through being repressed. The link with repression now illuminates Schelling′s definition of the uncanny as ‘something that should have remained hidden and has come into the open.’ (Freud: 2003, 147 f)
    • 2003, Nicholas Royle, The Uncanny, page 1 [1]:
      The uncanny involves feelings of uncertainty, in particular regarding the reality of who one is and what is being experienced.
    • 2011, Anneleen Masschelein, The Unconcept: The Freudian Uncanny in Late-Twentieth-Century Theory, page 2 [2]:
      Because the uncanny affects and haunts everything, it is in constant transformation and cannot be pinned down.
    • 2001, Diane Jonte-Pace, Speaking the Unspeakable, page 81 [3]:
      In the preceding chapter, we saw that Freud linked the maternal body, death, and the afterlife with the uncanny in his famous essay "The Uncanny" ("Das Unheimliche").
    • 1982, Samuel Weber, The Legend of Freud, page 20 [4]:
      This uncontrollable possibility—the possibility of a certain loss of control—can, perhaps, explain why the uncanny remains a marginal notion even within psychoanalysis itself.
    • 2005, Barbara Creed, Phallic Panic, page vii [5]:
      Freud argued that the uncanny was particularly associated with feelings of horror aroused by the figure of the paternal castrator, neglecting the tropes of woman and animal as a source of the uncanny.
    • 1994, Sonu Shamdasani and Michael Münchow, Speculations after Freud, page 186 [6]:
      As is well known, Freud introduced the concept of the uncanny into psychoanalysis in 1919 and used The Sandman as a prime illustration for his definition.

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