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What Does Retentive Mean?

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Nisha Fernandes answered
Retentive is something that possesses superior retention power. It is something that has an excellent capacity to retain something like for instance, water or information. Some instances include 'The clever students always exploit their God given retentive power to the best of their ability' or 'several tests were conducted on the job applicant to test her retentive power'. Retentivity is the noun form of retentive which is an adjective.

Anal Retentivity is a psychological concept that was propounded by the father of psychology Sigmund Freud. He used this term to denote one of the stages that a child undergoes during psychosexual development. In the anally retentive stage the child enjoys exercising the control over bowel movements. In psychosexual development, the anal stage follows the oral fixation stage and precedes the phallic stage wherein the child is enamoured with genitals.

Today however in colloquial jargon, the term anally retentive, is used more as a nickname for people who are excessively concerned with seemingly insignificant details, rather than in relation to Freudian psychology.

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