In Freudian psychology, a condensation (German: Verdichtung) is when a single idea (an image, memory, or thought) appropriates the whole charge of libido of at least two other ideas. The charges are displaced from the originating ideas to the receiving one, where they merge and "condense" together.
In the 1950s the concept was used by linguist Roman Jakobson in his influential lecture on metaphor and metonymy. Jakobson's lecture led Jacques Lacan to say that the unconscious is structured like a language.
- Alain de Mijolla (ed.). International Dictionary of Psychoanalysis, 1st vol.: "Condensation", Macmillan Reference Books, ISBN 0-02-865924-4