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n. a position that insists on the reality of explicitly mental phenomena, such as thinking and feeling. It holds that mental phenomena cannot be reduced to physical or physiological phenomena (see reductionism). The term is often used as a synonym for idealism, although some forms of mentalism may hold that mental events, although not reducible to physical substances, are nonetheless grounded in physical processes. Most modern cognitive theories are examples of this latter type of mentalism. Compare eliminativism; identity theory. See also conscious mentalism. —mentalist adj.

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Psychology term of the day

June 16th 2024

sexual aversion disorder

sexual aversion disorder

in DSM–IV–TR, negative emotional reactions (e.g., anxiety, fear, disgust) to sexual activity, leading to active avoidance of it and causing distress in the individual or his or her partner. This can be lifelong or acquired, and although it usually applies to all sexual activity (generalized type), it may be specific to some activities or some partners (situational type). This aversion is not caused by a medical condition, a medication, or a drug side effect. DSM–5 has eliminated this diagnosis with the explanation that it is rarely used and not supported by research.