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Generalisation   Listen
Generalisation

noun
1.
An idea or conclusion having general application.  Synonyms: generality, generalization.
2.
The process of formulating general concepts by abstracting common properties of instances.  Synonyms: abstraction, generalization.
3.
Reasoning from detailed facts to general principles.  Synonyms: generalization, induction, inductive reasoning.
4.
(psychology) transfer of a response learned to one stimulus to a similar stimulus.  Synonyms: generalization, stimulus generalisation, stimulus generalization.






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"Generalisation" Quotes from Famous Books



... generations from the land of dykes and canals should form alliances that wed them for ever to the sunny soil of Java. East may be East and West may be West, but here at least the lie is given to Kipling's generalisation, false like most generalisations, as to the impossibility of ...
— Across the Equator - A Holiday Trip in Java • Thomas H. Reid

... producing, between 1625 and 1633, "The Staple of News," "The New Inn," "The Magnetic Lady," and "The Tale of a Tub," the last doubtless revised from a much earlier comedy. None of these plays met with any marked success, although the scathing generalisation of Dryden that designated them "Jonson's dotages" is unfair to their genuine merits. Thus the idea of an office for the gathering, proper dressing, and promulgation of news (wild flight of the fancy in its time) was an excellent subject for satire on the existing ...
— The Alchemist • Ben Jonson

... appreciation of these things is possible only in the light of a whole system of such art-casuistries. And it is in the criticism of painting that this truth most needs enforcing, for it is in popular judgments on pictures that that false generalisation of all art into forms of poetry is most prevalent. To suppose that all is mere technical acquirement in delineation or touch, working through and addressing itself to the intelligence, on the one side, or a merely poetical, or what may be called literary interest, addressed also to the pure intelligence, ...
— The Renaissance - Studies in Art and Poetry • Walter Pater

... boyhood. It described how his "brave young voice" rang in the rafters. I also remember that I met him some days after, and he was considerably older than my own father. I mention this truth for only one purpose: all this generalisation leads up to only one fact—the fact that I once met a great man who ...
— Tremendous Trifles • G. K. Chesterton

... Southampton and to the period of his coming to London and the Court, towards the end of October, in the year 1590. A recent biographer of Shakespeare, writing of Southampton, sums up the incidents of this period in the following generalisation: "It was naturally to the Court that his friends sent him at an early age to display his varied graces. He can hardly have been more than seventeen when he was presented to his Sovereign. She showed ...
— Shakespeare's Lost Years in London, 1586-1592 • Arthur Acheson

... old, beautiful furniture, it is only the past perpetuated on top of you, horrible. And if you have a perfect modern house done for you by Poiret, it is something else perpetuated on top of you. It is all horrible. It is all possessions, possessions, bullying you and turning you into a generalisation. You have to be like Rodin, Michelangelo, and leave a piece of raw rock unfinished to your figure. You must leave your surroundings sketchy, unfinished, so that you are never contained, never confined, never dominated ...
— Women in Love • D. H. Lawrence

... Fang allowed himself to be driven away. This was a female of his kind, and it was a law of his kind that the males must not fight the females. He did not know anything about this law, for it was no generalisation of the mind, not a something acquired by experience of the world. He knew it as a secret prompting, as an urge of instinct—of the same instinct that made him howl at the moon and stars of nights, and that made him fear death and ...
— White Fang • Jack London

... information respecting the games and studies, the companions, the familiar haunts, of the school and college days of the person with whom he identified himself. It is the penalty which mature age pays for clearer ideas and higher powers of generalisation, that the recollection of facts becomes comparatively blurred. Very often an old man will relate with perfect distinctness the incidents of his youth and early manhood, while a haze will rest over much of the intervening period. Those who ...
— Essays on "Supernatural Religion" • Joseph B. Lightfoot

... which they may be obtained: measurement, enumeration, valuation, sampling, generalisation—Precautions to be ...
— Introduction to the Study of History • Charles V. Langlois

... flowers of his character, pearls strung on an endless thread; but she had a stubborn little way of challenging them one after the other, as if she never suspected that he HAD a character, such as it was, or that deficiencies might be organic; the irritating effect of a mind incapable of a generalisation. One might doubtless have overdone the idea that there was a general licence for such a man; but if this had happened it would have been through one's feeling that there could be none for such ...
— The Coxon Fund • Henry James

... the reasoning of crowds are the association of dissimilar things possessing a merely apparent connection between each other, and the immediate generalisation of particular cases. It is arguments of this kind that are always presented to crowds by those who know how to manage them. They are the only arguments by which crowds are to be influenced. A chain of logical argumentation is totally incomprehensible to crowds, and for this reason it is permissible ...
— The Crowd • Gustave le Bon

... and dignity she at once threw around them made a veiling cloud through which only a man entirely without the finer perceptions would have tried to penetrate. Fenwick, for all his surface gaucherie, did not attempt it. But he attacked her generalisation. With some vehemence he developed against it a Neo-pagan doctrine of joy—love of the earth and its natural pleasures—courage to take and dare—avoidance of suffering—and war on asceticism. He poured out a number of undigested thoughts, which showed a great deal of reading, ...
— Fenwick's Career • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... that the temperature of the air decreases at the average rate of 10 degrees for every 300 feet of elevation, and various computations, as, for example, those which relate to the co-efficient of refraction, have been founded on this basis; but Mr. Glaisher soon established that the above generalisation had to be much modified. The following, gathered from his notes is a typical example of such surprises as the aeronaut with due instrumental equipment ...
— The Dominion of the Air • J. M. Bacon

... what the service will not do. It will not change the nature of men, but it will mollify it into much that is exalted, that is noble, and that is good. It almost universally raises individual character; but it can never debase it. The world are too apt to generalise—and this generalisation has done much disservice to the British navy. It forms a notion, creates a beau-ideal—a very absurd one truly—and then tries every character by it. Even the officers of this beautiful service have tacitly given in to the delusion; ...
— Rattlin the Reefer • Edward Howard

... his "New Worlds for Old," Chapter III, The First Main Generalisation of Socialism, which according to Mr. ...
— The History of the Fabian Society • Edward R. Pease

... organ of a very high order. Bright, intelligent, full-circled, of great size compared to the bulk of the skull, protected by three complete eyelids; we realise that this must play an important part in the life of the bird. There are, of course, many exceptions to such a generalisation as this. For instance, many species of sparrows are dull-coloured. We must remember that the voice—the calls and songs of birds—is developed to a high degree, and in many instances renders bright colouring needless in attracting a mate or in ...
— The Log of the Sun - A Chronicle of Nature's Year • William Beebe

... more sweeping generalisation than this is required, it may be said that the whole, or nearly the whole, of the essential points of a sound Imperial policy admit of being embodied in this one statement, that, whilst steadily avoiding any movement in the direction of official proselytism, our relations ...
— Political and Literary essays, 1908-1913 • Evelyn Baring

... has written with a big brush, "He who is not a radical in his youth is a knave, he who is not a conservative in his age is a fool." The rough, if not rude, generalisation has been plausibly supported by the changes in the mental careers of Burke, Coleridge, Southey, and Wordsworth. But Carlyle was "a spirit of another sort," of more mixed yarn; and, as there is a vein of Conservatism in his early Radicalism, ...
— Thomas Carlyle - Biography • John Nichol

... been made it is the method of science no less than the common tendency of the human mind to buttress this theory with analogies and fancied homologies. In other words the isolated facts are built up into a generalisation. It is important to remember that in most cases this mental process begins very early; so that the analogies play a very obtrusive part in the building up of theories. As a rule a multitude of such influences play a part ...
— The Evolution of the Dragon • G. Elliot Smith

... in "spontaneous generation," nor in sudden transformations of lower into higher forms of life. The doctrine, "omne vivum e vivo"—every living thing (in the present condition of our earth) is born from a living thing—is now held by scientific investigators as a reasonable generalisation of experience. ...
— More Science From an Easy Chair • Sir E. Ray (Edwin Ray) Lankester

... artistic activities are those which bring man into emotional communion with external nature; and that such emotional communion is necessary for man's thorough spiritual health. Perception of cause and effect, generalisation of law, reduces the universe indeed to what man's intellect can grasp; but in the process of such reduction to the laws of man's thought, the universe is shorn of its very power to move man's emotion and overwhelm his soul. ...
— Laurus Nobilis - Chapters on Art and Life • Vernon Lee

... road. We also have seen at work those prudent physicists who dreaded too daring creeds, and who sought only to collect all the documentary evidence possible, or only took for their guide a few principles which were to them a simple generalisation of facts established by experiments; and we have been able to prove that they also were effecting good ...
— The New Physics and Its Evolution • Lucien Poincare

... appreciation of these things is possible only in the light of a whole system of such art- casuistries. Now painting is the art in the criticism of which this truth most needs enforcing, for it is in popular judgments on pictures that the false generalisation of all art into forms of poetry is most prevalent. To suppose that all is mere technical acquirement in delineation or touch, working through [132] and addressing itself to the intelligence, on the one side, ...
— The Renaissance: Studies in Art and Poetry • Walter Horatio Pater

... rudimentary sort of speculative knowledge, abstractions so simple that we can hardly conceive the human mind without them, must grow, and with difficulty. Philosophy itself, mental and moral, has its preparation, its forethoughts, in the poetry that preceded it. A powerful generalisation thrown into some salient phrase, such as [6] that of Heraclitus—"Panta rhei," all things fleet away—may startle a particular age by its novelty, but takes possession only because all along its root was somewhere among the natural ...
— Plato and Platonism • Walter Horatio Pater

... make Bruce remember Miss Elsie Gossamer's light, fleeting touch upon his life. He had never mentioned Miss Gossamer to Piney in all their mutual experience, yet the tramp-boy was constantly skirmishing up from afar with a generalisation, like a high-held transparency, that illuminated Miss Gossamer's memory for Bruce. Three hypotheses had presented to Bruce in the way of explanation: one, that he himself was possessed by a little embarrassed consciousness that he should have ...
— Sally of Missouri • R. E. Young

... matter itself. It must be remembered that every special province of the science has its systematic beginning, and in that stage of evolution makes a temporary 'law unto itself.' In the absence of a dominating theory or generalisation which, when adopted, gives it an organic connection with the general advance of the science, there is no other course than to classify the subject-matter. Thus 'the carbohydrates' may be said to have been in the inchoate condition, qualified by a certain ...
— Researches on Cellulose - 1895-1900 • C. F. Cross

... similar to that of one who should hold that nothing but the stupidity of the East Anglian yokel has prevented that country from becoming as much a centre of industry as is Lancashire, for such a sweeping generalisation would take no account of other forces at work in the development of the great commercial centres of the North as, for example, the fact that the peculiar conditions of the Lancashire climate are such ...
— Ireland and the Home Rule Movement • Michael F. J. McDonnell

... "I don't know any one who was fonder of a generalisation than you. You turned them off as the man at the ...
— The Tragic Muse • Henry James

... halves. In 1519 his rule is pronounced more suave and gentle than the greatest liberty anywhere else; twenty years later terror is said to reign supreme. It is tempting to sum up his life in one sweeping generalisation, and to say that it exhibits a continuous development of Henry's intellect and deterioration of his character. Yet it is difficult to read the King's speech in Parliament at the close of 1545, without crediting him with some sort of ethical ideas and aims; ...
— Henry VIII. • A. F. Pollard



Words linked to "Generalisation" :   thought, principle, theorization, irradiation, transfer, stimulus generalisation, generalise, theorisation, idea, transfer of training, rule, stimulus generalization, colligation, inductive reasoning, psychological science, psychology, carry-over



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