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    Awareness of one's self in relation to time, place, and person.


Orientation columns
The primary visual cortex (V1) is organized into narrow columns (from pial surface to white matter) containing cells with almost identically the same orientation preferences.


Oedipus complex
Attachment of the child to the parent of the opposite sex, accompanied by envious and aggressive feelings toward the parent of the same sex. These feelings are largely repressed (i.e., made unconscious) because of the fear of displeasure or punishment by the parent of the same sex. In its original use, the term applied only to the boy or man.

Olfactory hallucination
A hallucination involving the perception of odor, such as of burning rubber or decaying fish.

Pertaining to the development of the individual.

Operant conditioning
A process by which the results of the person's behavior determine whether the behavior is more or less likely to occur in the future.

Oral stage
The earliest of the stages of infantile psychosexual development, lasting from birth to 12 months or longer. Usually subdivided into two stages: the oral erotic, relating to the pleasurable experience of sucking; and the oral sadistic, associated with aggressive biting. Both oral eroticism and sadism continue into adult life in disguised and sublimated forms, such as the character traits of demandingness or pessimism. Oral conflict, as a general and pervasive influence, might underlie the psychological determinants of addictive disorders, depression, and some functional psychotic disorders.


A conscious or unconscious process in which a real or imagined physical or psychological deficit generates exaggerated correction. Concept introduced by Adler.

The concept of multiple unconscious causes of an emotional reaction or symptom

Overvalued idea
An unreasonable and sustained belief that is maintained with less than delusional intensity (i.e., the person is able to acknowledge the possibility that the belief may not be true). The belief is not one that is ordinarily accepted by other members of the person's culture or subculture.

Marked by a need to repeatedly perform certain behaviors or rituals.

The back of the head.

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