An unconscious defense mechanism in which reasoning, logic, or focusing on and verbalizing intellectual minutiae is used in an attempt to avoid confrontation with an objectionable impulse, affect, or interpersonal situation. [L. intellectus, perception, discernment]

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in·tel·lec·tu·al·iza·tion (in″tə-lek″choo-əl-ĭ-zaґshən) a type of defense mechanism in which reasoning is used to avoid confronting an objectionable impulse, emotional conflict, or other stressor and thus to defend against anxiety.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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