Also found in: Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.


Referring to oneself or itself: The biographer's account of the poet's life was surprisingly self-referential.

self′-ref′er·ence n.
self′-ref′er·en′tial·ly adv.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(of a book, film, etc) concerned with things such as its own composition or with other similar books or films
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
References in periodicals archive ?
In addition to these realistic verismo elements that create a connection with the outside world, however, the opera also incorporates several self-referential elements which have rarely been discussed in the literature.
Among the topics are potentiality in natural philosophy, bridging necessity and contingency in quantum mechanics, a logical analysis of relational realism, and process physics: self-referential information and experiential reality.
your day relentlessly, you might say, self-referential.
The first argument is a self-referential one that is not involved with any self-referential inconsistency.
It was so entertaining as a comedy, as a horror film, as a self-referential, and also had great characters." Bex Taylor-Klaus said she thinks the success of the movies and the TV show will come from the unique genre-mixing.
your own ghost and falling into an ethereal abyss of self-referential
It seemed so self-referential and was one of those glorious experiences; like watching The Wrestler, a film starring someone you've kinda forgotten just how brilliant an actor they are.
CANNES, France -- Kristen Stewart made a late cameo at the Cannes Film Festival, where she received warm reviews for a self-referential performance alongside Juliette Binoche.
According to the study conducted by scientists in Penn Medicine and the National Institute on Drug Abuse, nicotine withdrawal makes it hard for people to shift from "default mode", when people are in "introspective" or "self-referential" state, into a control network, the executive control network, that could help exert more conscious, self-control over cravings and to focus on quitting for good.
The investigators said cortical midline structure (CMS) circuitry is thought to play a key role in the neurobiology of affective illness because the medial cortex is involved in emotional regulation, self-referential thinking, the default mode network and may mediate the relationship between aberrant self-referential thinking and negative affect in mood disorders."
If you weren't spooked by James Wan's 2011 supernatural horror Insidious, you stand little chance of making sense of this self-referential sequel.
If you weren't spooked by James Wan's 2011 horror, you stand little chance of making sense of this self-referential sequel.