the alleviation of unpleasant emotions by witnessing their representation in an artistic production, such as the drama;
the relief of abnormal excitement by reestablishing the connection between the emotion and the object which originally excited it;
a term applied by Breuer to the technique of unburdening disturbing complexes, which was subsequently developed as psychoanalysis. Dictionary of Psychology, Houghton Mifflin Co. 1934
Exercises in Catharsis
Write of emotions evoked by the room in which you are writing.
Describe an incident that provokes fear.
Describe a terrifying character.
Create a monologue that is filled with insults.
Write a dramatic dialogue evoking fear and pity.