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imago


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1 In psychoanalysis, an idealized image of another person, such as a parent, or of an instinctual object, acquired in infancy and maintained in the unconscious (2) in later life. The concept was introduced in 1911 by Carl Gustav Jung (1875–1961), who believed that some imagos are derived from archetypes (2) rather than from personal experiences, and it became a key concept of his analytical psychology. In the writings of the British-based Austrian psychoanalyst Melanie Klein (1882–1960), it is a fantastically distorted picture of the real object on which it is based. See also anima, animus (3), idealization.

2 A mature adult insect produced by metamorphosis. [From Latin imago a likeness, from imitari to copy]


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