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inferiority complex

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noun
  1. Psychiatry. intense feeling of inferiority, producing a personality characterized either by extreme reticence or, as a result of overcompensation, by extreme aggressiveness.
  2. lack of self-esteem; feeling of inadequacy; lack of self-confidence.
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Origin of inferiority complex

First recorded in 1920–25
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for inferiority complex

Historical Examples

  • I yielded to an instinct for deprecative horse-play, one of my worst faults, begot of an inferiority-complex.

    Tramping on Life

    Harry Kemp


British Dictionary definitions for inferiority complex

inferiority complex

noun
  1. psychiatry a disorder arising from the conflict between the desire to be noticed and the fear of being humiliated, characterized by aggressiveness or withdrawal into oneself
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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

inferiority complex in Medicine

inferiority complex

n.
  1. A persistent sense of inadequacy or the tendency to diminish oneself, sometimes resulting in excessively aggressive behavior through overcompensation.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.