Encyclopedia of Critical Psychology

2014 Edition
| Editors: Thomas Teo

Fantasy, Overview

  • Raya A. Jones
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-5583-7_351

Introduction

A fantasy is ordinarily regarded as detached from reality, e.g., whimsical daydreams, unrealistic plans, or artistic fiction. Inquiring about the human fantasy life overlaps topics such as creativity, imagination, dreams, play, as well as dissociative disorders. There is no unified field of research dedicated to the vicissitudes of fantasy. Various issues are identified, theorized, and empirically explored within intellectual communities that historically had little dialogue with each other. Some lines of inquiry differ simply due to divergent aims. Whereas developmental psychologists study children’s pretend play toward advancing knowledge of typical development, psychologists of individual differences may identify characteristics of a fantasy-prone personality as correlates of psychopathology. Research in both contexts centers on what the fantasizer consciously recognizes as unreal. While the issues of both developmental functions and mental health implications enter...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Social SciencesCardiff UniversityCardiffUK