cognitive dissonance

  1. anxiety or discomfort that results from simultaneously holding contradictory or otherwise incompatible attitudes, beliefs, or the like, such as when someone likes a person but disapproves strongly of one of their habits.

Origin of cognitive dissonance

First recorded in 1960–65 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use cognitive dissonance in a sentence

  • But the most common reaction is the good old cognitive dissonance.

    After the Rain | Sam Vaknin
  • One of the classic defence mechanisms is the cognitive dissonance.

    After the Rain | Sam Vaknin

British Dictionary definitions for cognitive dissonance

cognitive dissonance

  1. psychol an uncomfortable mental state resulting from conflicting cognitions; usually resolved by changing some of the cognitions

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012