Definition of abstraction noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//æbˈstrækʃn//
    ; NAmE NAmE//æbˈstrækʃn//
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  1. 1[countable, uncountable] (formal) a general idea not based on any particular real person, thing or situation; the quality of being abstract
  2. 2[uncountable] (formal) the state of thinking deeply about something and not paying attention to what is around you She was gazing in abstraction at the far corner of the room.
  3. 3[uncountable, countable] the action of removing something from something else; the process of being removed from something else water abstraction from rivers
  4. Word Originlate Middle English: from Latin abstractio(n-), from the verb abstrahere ‘draw away’ from ab- ‘from’ + trahere ‘draw off’.Extra examples Ideological abstractions are never going to attract many voters. The idea of ‘the nation’ can be seen as an abstraction. The increasing abstraction of modern art has tended to make it increasingly difficult to interpret.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: abstraction