GrammarPhile Blog

Vocabulary Test: Know Your Psychoses

Posted by Conni Eversull   Sep 25, 2012 10:15:00 AM

It's amazing how loosely the terms in today's quiz are used (and misused) in everyday writing and conversation. Choose the right meaning. Compare your choices with the correct answers at the bottom of this column.

1. schizophrenia: (a) a psychoneurosis marked by emotional excitability and disturbances of the psychic, sensory, vasomotor, and visceral functions; (b) great fear especially in the face of impending evil; (c) a psychotic disorder characterized by loss of contact with the environment, by noticeable deterioration in the level of functioning in everyday life, and by disintegration of personality expressed as disorder of feeling, thought (as delusions), perception (as hallucinations), and behavior - called also dementia praecox; (d) a hysterical neurosis in which the personality becomes dissociated into two or more distinct but complex and socially and behaviorally integrated parts each of which becomes dominant and controls behavior from time to time to the exclusion of the others.

2. delusional: (a) having little substance or strength; (b) a persistent false psychotic belief regarding the self or persons or objects outside the self that is maintained despite indisputable evidence to the contrary; (c) an insincere, contemptible, or impertinent imitation; (d) a fake in which a player simulates throwing a pass (as in football) or taking a shot (as in basketball).

3. depression: (a) a psychoneurotic or psychotic disorder marked especially by sadness, inactivity, difficulty in thinking and concentration, a significant increase or decrease in appetite and time spent sleeping, feelings of dejection and hopelessness, and sometimes suicidal tendencies; (b) a psychoneurosis marked by emotional excitability and disturbances of the psychic, sensory, vasomotor, and visceral functions; (c) deficient in assurance : beset by fear and anxiety; (d) fear of offending against conventional rules of behavior especially between the sexes.

4. neurosis: (a) an acute or chronic mental dysfunction (as Alzheimer's disease) resulting chiefly from physical changes in brain structure and characterized especially by impaired cognition; (b) an exaggerated usually inexplicable and illogical fear of a particular object, class of objects, or situation; (c) loss or impairment of the power to use or comprehend words usually resulting from brain damage; (d) a mental and emotional disorder that affects only part of the personality, is accompanied by a less distorted perception of reality than in a psychosis, does not result in disturbance of the use of language, and is accompanied by various physical, physiological, and mental disturbances (as visceral symptoms, anxieties, or phobias).

5. paranoia: (a) a belief or practice resulting from ignorance, fear of the unknown, trust in magic or chance, or a false conception of causation; (b) a conscious mental reaction (as anger or fear) subjectively experienced as strong feeling usually directed toward a specific object and typically accompanied by physiological and behavioral changes in the body; (c) a psychosis characterized by systematized delusions of persecution or grandeur usually without hallucinations; (d) two perfectly matched noias.

6. psychoneurosis: (a) a neurosis based on emotional conflict in which an impulse that has been blocked seeks expression in a disguised response or symptom; (b) conditioning in order to replace an undesirable response (as fear) to a stimulus (as an engagement in public speaking) by a favorable one; (c) elimination of a complex by bringing it to consciousness and affording it expression; (d) behavior exhibiting overwhelming or unmanageable fear or emotional excess.

7. psychosomatic: (a) the coincidental occurrence of events and especially psychic events (as similar thoughts in widely separated persons or a mental image of an unexpected event before it happens) that seem related but are not explained by conventional mechanisms of causality - used especially in the psychology of C. G. Jung; (b) motivational forces acting especially at the unconscious level; (c) of, relating to, involving, or concerned with the transmission of a Harley-Davidson motorcycle; (d) of, relating to, involving, or concerned with bodily symptoms caused by mental or emotional disturbance.

Here are the answers!

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