Meaning of defamiliarize in English:


(British defamiliarise)

Pronunciation /ˌdiːfəˈmɪljərʌɪz/


[with object]
  • Make (something) unfamiliar or strange.

    ‘art serves to defamiliarize our experience of our own present’
    • ‘Not merely altering a work's style or spirit, translation robbed it of its unceasing power to defamiliarize readers with respect to their experience and to compel them to confront their own ignorance.’
    • ‘By defamiliarizing well-known buildings, some of which we may have an image of in our mind, Sugimoto compels us to consider them with renewed attentiveness.’
    • ‘These initial defamiliarizing images set the tone for the sketch's central drama-the transformations that the youth's point of view undergoes.’
    • ‘The poems themselves act as fissures in the surface of consumerism, defamiliarizing cultural meanings.’
    • ‘Instead of subjecting description to action, as do Homer and Virgil in their narrativizing descriptions, Keats defamiliarizes the adjective and lingers on it.’
    • ‘A common plaything for Chinese children, the grasshopper is defamiliarized as ‘a six-legged monster, fresh-grass green, with saw-blade jaws, bulging eyes, and whips for eyebrows’.’
    • ‘Postmodern novels defamiliarize this ideology by highlighting their own status as textual constructs, thereby disallowing readers to interpret their fictive worlds as transparent or neutral reflections of reality.’
    • ‘His belief that ‘Language is a virus’ led him to employ the ‘cut-up’ technique - a process whereby words or sentences would be taken from any source and reassembled in a way that would defamiliarize them.’
    • ‘Discussing SF as the dialectical counterpart to the historical novel, Jameson suggests that one of the primary roles of SF is not so much to promote visions of the future, but to defamiliarize the present.’
    • ‘The searing human feelings of these characters are often narrated in awkward English to achieve an Orientalist effect, to defamiliarize universal emotions as exotic, somehow deeper, ones.’
    • ‘When close-ups are used, they individualize people rather than defamiliarize objects.’
    • ‘By making a quick flash of light when developing a print he was able to introduce - without really controlling - peculiar accidents of tone that defamiliarize the image.’
    • ‘The use of a child is a method with which we can defamiliarize reality - to use the term from the Russian Formalists - for the purpose of shock.’
    • ‘I have certain strategies involved with trying to slightly defamiliarize English.’
    • ‘The underlying principle of revision is the use of various defamiliarising techniques that upset the reader's expectations.’
    • ‘Yes, it's mixing, not layering. The effect of this is to defamiliarise the author, or, at least, authorial intent.’
    • ‘The reverse structure is a crude way of defamiliarising a very basic plot and has none of the formal invention and daring of, say, Tarantino's experiments in cause and effect.’
    • ‘Whether it was in the service of merging art and everyday life, defamiliarizing the ordinary or creating evocative formal disjunctions, these artists managed to successfully integrate those objects into the work as a whole.’
    • ‘In effect, Stephen Greenblatt's latest book Hamlet in Purgatory has taken on the challenge of defamiliarizing the most famous play in Western literature by placing it in its proper theological setting.’
    • ‘Getting into that mindset, defamiliarizing the familiar, is really fun.’