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could someone please explain to me what idealism is? i think i know but i just need clarification. i've already looked it up several times but have gotten different answers. thanks!

Thank you for using the Jiskha Homework Help Forum. Here is what the Online Dictionary says:

Main Entry: ide·al·ism
Pronunciation: I-'dE-(&-)"liz-&m, 'I-(")dE-
Function: noun
Date: 1796
1 a (1) : a theory that ultimate reality lies in a realm transcending phenomena (2) : a theory that the essential nature of reality lies in consciousness or reason b (1) : a theory that only the perceptible is real (2) : a theory that only mental states or entities are knowable
2 a : the practice of forming ideals or living under their influence b : something that is idealized
3 : literary or artistic theory or practice that affirms the preeminent value of imagination as compared with faithful copying of nature — compare REALISM

If any of these definitions do not work for you, please state where you saw the word, in context.

P.S.

Here are some websites with further explanation and examples:

1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Idealism

2. http://www.answers.com/topic/idealism

3. http://www.bartleby.com/65/id/idealism.html

Thank you!! that works!

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