Definition of representation in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌreprəˌzenˈtāSH(ə)n/


1The action of speaking or acting on behalf of someone or the state of being so represented: asylum-seekers should be guaranteed good legal advice and representation
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  • Because representation through speaking is impossible, Ginsberg is free to do whatever he wants to answer a question.
  • Surely this isn't our musical representation speaking out on behalf of urban youth everywhere and finally, we don't have to be ashamed?
  • He felt that they should have better representation in the acting world.
2The description or portrayal of someone or something in a particular way or as being of a certain nature: the representation of women in newspapers
More example sentences
  • It does, however, authorize and inform the tensions between the past and the present, the historical event and its representation, that I have been describing.
  • Ingres based his representation of the Cardinal on Raphael's portrait of him and that of Raphael on a supposed self-portrait.
  • They are then more the implicit signifiers of his own subject position than they are his explicit analysis or representation of such contradictions.
portrayal, depiction, delineation, presentation, rendition
2.1The depiction of someone or something in a picture or other work of art: Picasso is striving for some absolute representation of reality
More example sentences
  • I enjoyed Russell's depiction of the redundancy in Los Angeles and his visual representation of Creation.
  • Denoncourt's Via crucis explores a boy's imaginative interpretation of the Catholic iconic representation of the crucifixion and ascension of Christ.
  • Since such painting is relativist - as concerned with style and representation as it is with reality - the artist draws no conclusions.
2.2A thing, especially a picture or model, that depicts a likeness or reproduction of someone or something: a striking representation of a vase of flowers
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  • Poussin's view of the genre, as a representation modelled on true nature, echoes the meaning of the caprice in at least one form of literature.
  • It is my contention that Van Eyck's picture is a posthumous representation of Costanza, the only wife of Giovanni di Nicolao of whose existence we find any evidence.
  • An object model is a representation of the information, content and structure which needs to be exchanged or shared.
likeness, painting, drawing, picture, illustration, sketch, image, model, figure, figurine, statue, statuette
2.3(In some theories of perception) a mental state or concept regarded as corresponding to a thing perceived.
Example sentences
  • In this account, mental consciousness, and the ability to form mental representation, owe their existence to, and are correlated with the brain.
  • Clearly, three decades of feminist theory of representation have yet to have any perceptible impact on Balthus studies.
  • It is this movement to an image of abstract ambiguity, both still and pulsating in time, which saves the films from repeating the stereotypes of feminist film theories of representation.
3 (representations) Formal statements made to a higher authority, especially so as to communicate an opinion or register a protest: certain church groups are making strong representations to our government
3.1A statement or allegation: any buyer was relying on a representation that the tapes were genuine
More example sentences
  • Many people worry about how to respond to those representations both critically and supportively.
  • As an auditor, Tim had understood that management representations required appropriate questioning.
  • In all three cases, our members accepted management's representations and issued unqualified audit reports on the statements presented.
statement, deposition, allegation, declaration, exposition, report, protestation


Late Middle English (in the sense 'image, likeness'): from Old French representation or Latin repraesentatio(n-), from repraesentare 'bring before, exhibit' (see represent).

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Syllabification: rep·re·sen·ta·tion

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