free association

noun
Updated on: 17 Nov 2017

Definition of free association

1 a :the expression (as by speaking or writing) of the content of consciousness without censorship as an aid in gaining access to unconscious processes especially in psychoanalysis
b :the reporting of the first thought that comes to mind in response to a given stimulus (such as a word)
2 :an idea or image elicited by free association
3 :a method using free association

free-associate

play \ˌfrē-ə-ˈsō-sē-ˌāt, -shē-\ intransitive verb

free-associative

play \-sē-ˌā-tiv, -shē-ˌā- -shə-tiv\ adjective

Recent Examples of free association from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'free association.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of free association

1925


Medical Dictionary

free association

noun

medical Definition of free association

1 a :the expression (as by speaking or writing) of the content of consciousness without censorship as an aid in gaining access to unconscious processes especially in psychoanalysis
b :the reporting of the first thought that comes to mind in response to a given stimulus (as a word)
2 :an idea or image elicited by free association
3 :a method using free association

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