Definition of anima in English:



  • 1(in Jungian psychology) the feminine part of a man's personality.

    Often contrasted with animus (sense 3)
    • ‘From H. Rider Haggard's novel She, Jung found an embodiment of the anima.’
    • ‘The animus corresponds to the paternal Logos just as the anima corresponds to the maternal Eros.’
    • ‘It allows my animus and anima to express themselves in unison.’
    • ‘Have you considered that they may be pointing to your anima or feminine side?’
    • ‘Jung named all the feminine content of a man's soul the anima, experienced as emotion, disposition, and mood.’
    • ‘When the male ego feels under threat from the anima, Jung postulates, it may project the attacking motive onto an external woman or women.’
    • ‘According to Jung, one must get in touch with the Shadow and Anima/Animus before one can truly get in touch with the Self.’
    • ‘Elaine would be his anima, the feminine version or aspect of him.’
    • ‘The Polarity model tends to get explained in terms of Yin / Yang, Shiva-Shakti or Jung's concept of anima / animus.’
    • ‘Jung said that the animus is more likely to be personified by multiple male figures, while the anima is frequently a single female.’
    • ‘Jung postulates that each individual has both masculine and feminine components of the psyche. For a male the feminine component is the anima, and for a female it is the animus.’
    • ‘Jung developed his theory of the personal animus and anima - male and female aspects of the psyche.’
    • ‘The anima represents the female nature of consciousness, the female aspect of life, while the animus is the term given to represent the male aspect of life.’
    • ‘Although attempts have been made to portray the closing soliloquy of Molly Bloom as the secret life of Nora Barnacle, it is really a coda to the completed book, and in most respects a glimpse into the anima of James Joyce.’
    • ‘Jung identified the anima as being the unconscious feminine component of men.’
    • ‘So let’s put Jung’s psychology to the test and see what he had to say about the anima, or men and their feelings.’
    • ‘The anima is the Jungian concept of the female image within the male, which acts as a mediating force between the ego and the unconscious.’
    • ‘His eyes are blinded by his need to deny the anima within, and he shall suffer as those he seeks to control and capture!’
    • ‘Our conventional wisdom says a man who kills an anima figure is surely doomed.’
    • ‘Should art - high or low - only inspire the animus, not the anima?’
    • ‘He also identified the anima (an archetype of female wisdom) and the animus (the embodiment of masculine qualities).’
  • 2The part of the psyche which is directed inwards, in touch with the subconscious.

    ‘persona and anima switch roles and merge in slow, smooth ways’
    Often contrasted with persona
    • ‘The anima represents the female traits that a man's persona lacks.’
    • ‘The anima imprints the persona. As such, over time, examination of the persona may allow insight into the anima.’
    • ‘Jyeshta has no worshippers in the world because the world worships only persona or appearance and glamour - and not anima or inner soul.’
    • ‘Jung called the persona the "outward face" of the psyche because it is that face which the world sees. The "inward face" he called the anima in males and the animus in females.’
    • ‘He creates a new persona. This new persona allows him to realize his anima traits.’
    soul, spirit, self, inner self, innermost self, ego, inner ego, true being, essential nature, life force, vital force, inner man, inner woman, persona, identity, personality, individuality, make-up, subconscious, mind, intellect
    View synonyms


1920s: from Latin, ‘mind, soul’.