Difference Wiki

Imagination vs. Fantasy: What's the Difference?

Edited by Sumera Saeed || By Sawaira Riaz || Updated on September 21, 2023
Imagination is the ability to form new ideas, while Fantasy is the imaginative conception of unreal or improbable scenarios.

Key Differences

Imagination refers to the human ability to visualize, create, and form new ideas, concepts, or images in the mind that have not been directly perceived through the senses. It is a cognitive process that is fundamental to problem-solving, creativity, and innovation. Fantasy, on the other hand, is a genre of imagination that deals specifically with the creation of unreal or improbable scenarios, often involving magical or supernatural elements, which do not exist in reality.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023
Imagination is an inherent mental ability that everyone possesses to some degree. It allows people to explore possibilities, envision alternatives, and consider potential solutions to problems. Fantasy, meanwhile, is a specific manifestation of imagination that is often characterized by a departure from reality, allowing individuals to explore and escape to different, often whimsical, worlds and scenarios.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023
Imagination serves as a tool for both artistic expression and practical problem-solving. It is not confined to any specific genre or subject and can relate to anything from science to art. In contrast, fantasy is a form of artistic expression that primarily serves as entertainment, providing an escape from reality through stories, games, and other media.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023
Imagination can be realistic or unrealistic, allowing for the creation of ideas that can be practical and applicable in real life or purely theoretical. Fantasy, by definition, is unrealistic and deals with scenarios, characters, and settings that are not possible in the known world, enabling the exploration of the impossible.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023
While imagination is often used to create new ideas or solutions that can be applied in the real world, fantasy is more about exploring the boundaries of the mind and experiencing the joy of the impossible. Both are essential for the development of creativity, critical thinking, and a sense of wonder and discovery.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023
ADVERTISEMENT

Comparison Chart

Nature

Cognitive ability to form new ideas.
Conception of unreal scenarios.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Application

Problem-solving, innovation.
Entertainment, escape.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Relation to Reality

Can be realistic or unrealistic.
Inherently unrealistic.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Scope

Wide, not confined to any genre.
Specific genre of imagination.
Janet White
Sep 21, 2023

Purpose

Exploration of possibilities, creativity.
Exploration of the impossible.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023
ADVERTISEMENT

Imagination and Fantasy Definitions

Imagination

Imagination is the formation of images or ideas in the mind.
With a bit of imagination, she transformed the ordinary room into a cozy sanctuary.
Harlon Moss
Sep 21, 2023

Fantasy

Fantasy is a genre characterized by unreal or magical elements.
The book is a fantasy filled with dragons and wizards.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 21, 2023

Imagination

Imagination enables the visualization of things not actually present.
Through imagination, architects visualize structures before they are built.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Fantasy

Fantasy is inherently unrealistic and not bound by real-world limitations.
In the realm of fantasy, the laws of physics do not necessarily apply.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Imagination

Imagination is the creative faculty of the mind.
Children often have a vivid imagination, creating elaborate tales and games.
Janet White
Sep 21, 2023

Fantasy

The creative imagination; unrestrained fancy.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

Imagination can generate both realistic and unrealistic ideas.
The scientist used her imagination to conceptualize theories about the universe.
Sara Rehman
Sep 21, 2023

Fantasy

Something, such as an invention, that is a creation of the fancy.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

The ability to form mental images of things that are not present to the senses or not considered to be real
The author uses her imagination to create a universe parallel to our own.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

A capricious or fantastic idea; a conceit.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

The formation of such images
A child's imagination of monsters.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

A genre of fiction or other artistic work characterized by fanciful or supernatural elements.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

One of these mental images
"some secret sense ... which ... took to itself and treasured up ... her thoughts, her imaginations, her desires" (Virginia Woolf).
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

A work of this genre.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

The mind viewed as the locus or repository of this ability or these images
"This story had been rattling around in my imagination for years" (Orson Scott Card).
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

An imagined event or sequence of mental images, such as a daydream, usually fulfilling a wish or psychological need.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

The ability to confront and deal with reality by using the creative power of the mind; resourcefulness
Handled the problems with great imagination.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

An unrealistic or improbable supposition.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

Attention, interest, or enthusiasm
An explorer's ordeal that caught the imagination of the public.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

(Music) See fantasia.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

The image-making power of the mind; the act of mentally creating or reproducing an object not previously perceived; the ability to create such images.
Imagination is one of the most advanced human faculties.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

A coin issued especially by a questionable authority and not intended for use as currency.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

Particularly, construction of false images; fantasizing.
You think someone's been following you? That's just your imagination.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

(Obsolete) A hallucination.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

Creativity; resourcefulness.
His imagination makes him a valuable team member.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

Relating to or being a game in which participants act as owners of imaginary sports teams whose personnel consists of actual players selected from a professional sports league and team performance is determined by the combined statistics of the players.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

A mental image formed by the action of the imagination as a faculty; something imagined.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

To imagine; visualize.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

The imagine-making power of the mind; the power to create or reproduce ideally an object of sense previously perceived; the power to call up mental imagines.
Our simple apprehension of corporeal objects, if present, is sense; if absent, is imagination.
Imagination is of three kinds: joined with belief of that which is to come; joined with memory of that which is past; and of things present, or as if they were present.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

That which comes from one's imagination.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

The representative power; the power to reconstruct or recombine the materials furnished by direct apprehension; the complex faculty usually termed the plastic or creative power; the fancy.
The imagination of common language - the productive imagination of philosophers - is nothing but the representative process plus the process to which I would give the name of the "comparative."
The power of the mind to decompose its conceptions, and to recombine the elements of them at its pleasure, is called its faculty of imagination.
The business of conception is to present us with an exact transcript of what we have felt or perceived. But we have moreover a power of modifying our conceptions, by combining the parts of different ones together, so as to form new wholes of our creation. I shall employ the word imagination to express this power.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

(literature) The literary genre generally dealing with themes of magic and the supernatural, imaginary worlds and creatures, etc.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

The power to recombine the materials furnished by experience or memory, for the accomplishment of an elevated purpose; the power of conceiving and expressing the ideal.
The lunatic, the lover, and the poetAre of imagination all compact . . . The poet's eye, in a fine frenzy rolling,Doth glance from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven,And as imagination bodies forthThe forms of things unknown, the poet's penTurns them to shapes, and gives to airy nothingA local habitation and a name.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

A fantastical design.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

A mental image formed by the action of the imagination as a faculty; a conception; a notion.
The same power, which we should call fancy if employed on a production of a light nature, would be dignified with the title of imagination if shown on a grander scale.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

(slang) The drug gamma-hydroxybutyric acid.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

The formation of a mental image of something that is not perceived as real and is not present to the senses;
Popular imagination created a world of demons
Imagination reveals what the world could be
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

To fantasize (about).
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

The ability to form mental images of things or events;
He could still hear her in his imagination
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

(obsolete) To have a fancy for; to be pleased with; to like.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

The ability to deal resourcefully with unusual problems;
A man of resource
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

(transitive) To imagine; to conceive mentally.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Imagination

Imagination is the mental ability to create new ideas or concepts.
His imagination allowed him to devise innovative solutions to complex problems.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 21, 2023

Fantasy

Fancy; imagination; especially, a whimsical or fanciful conception; a vagary of the imagination; whim; caprice; humor.
Is not this something more than fantasy ?
A thousand fantasiesBegin to throng into my memory.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

Fantastic designs.
Embroidered with fantasies and flourishes of gold thread.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

To have a fancy for; to be pleased with; to like; to fancy.
Which he doth most fantasy.
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

Imagination unrestricted by reality;
A schoolgirl fantasy
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

Fiction with a large amount of fantasy in it;
She made a lot of money writing romantic fantasies
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

Something many people believe that is false;
They have the illusion that I am very wealthy
Sawaira Riaz
Nov 30, 2022

Fantasy

Fantasy involves the creation of imaginary worlds and characters.
His latest fantasy novel explores a world where time operates differently.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Fantasy

Fantasy provides an escape from reality.
Many turn to fantasy literature as a form of escapism from the mundane everyday life.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Fantasy

Fantasy is a specific manifestation of imagination.
The artist used his fantasy to paint a scene where water flowed upwards.
Janet White
Sep 21, 2023

FAQs

Is fantasy a form of imagination?

Yes, fantasy is a specific genre or manifestation of imagination, dealing with unreal scenarios.
Harlon Moss
Sep 21, 2023

Is imagination essential for innovation?

Absolutely, imagination is crucial for envisioning new possibilities and innovations.
Sara Rehman
Sep 21, 2023

Can everyone use imagination?

Yes, everyone possesses imagination to some degree, allowing the formation of new ideas or images.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 21, 2023

Can imagination be realistic?

Yes, imagination can generate ideas that are both realistic and applicable in real life.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

What is the purpose of imagination?

Imagination serves to create new ideas or concepts and is fundamental to problem-solving and creativity.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Does fantasy serve as entertainment?

Yes, fantasy primarily serves as a form of entertainment, allowing escape from reality.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 21, 2023

Can fantasy be used for problem-solving?

Typically, fantasy is not used for problem-solving but serves as an escape and entertainment.
Harlon Moss
Sep 21, 2023

Is fantasy always unrealistic?

Yes, fantasy involves unreal or improbable scenarios that do not exist in the real world.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Is fantasy confined to a specific genre?

Fantasy is a specific genre characterized by the presence of magical or unreal elements.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Can imagination lead to practical solutions?

Yes, imagination can lead to practical and innovative solutions to real-world problems.
Janet White
Sep 21, 2023

Does imagination involve visualization?

Yes, imagination involves the ability to visualize things that are not actually present.
Harlon Moss
Sep 21, 2023

Is fantasy inherently a departure from reality?

Yes, fantasy is inherently a departure from reality, focusing on unreal or magical elements.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 21, 2023

Is imagination confined to any subject or genre?

No, imagination is not confined to any specific subject or genre and can relate to anything from science to art.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Can fantasy explore the impossible?

Absolutely, fantasy allows the exploration of impossible and whimsical scenarios and worlds.
Janet White
Sep 21, 2023

Can imagination and fantasy enhance creativity?

Yes, both imagination and fantasy are essential for the development of creativity and a sense of wonder.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 21, 2023
About Author
Written by
Sawaira Riaz
Sawaira is a dedicated content editor at difference.wiki, where she meticulously refines articles to ensure clarity and accuracy. With a keen eye for detail, she upholds the site's commitment to delivering insightful and precise content.
Edited by
Sumera Saeed
Sumera is an experienced content writer and editor with a niche in comparative analysis. At Diffeence Wiki, she crafts clear and unbiased comparisons to guide readers in making informed decisions. With a dedication to thorough research and quality, Sumera's work stands out in the digital realm. Off the clock, she enjoys reading and exploring diverse cultures.

Trending Comparisons

Popular Comparisons

New Comparisons