In French, literally, "above or out of realism": originally a French literary and artistic movement of the 1920s, aimed at liberating artistic works from the control of logic and reason. Surrealists experimented with techniques such as Automatic Writing, sometimes under hypnosis. They were greatly influenced by the insights of Freudian psychology as they tried to express in paint, print or incoherent language the unfettered images of the subconscious mind.
Influenced Samuel Beckett, Jean Genet, and Eugene Ionesco.
The Harper Handbook to Literature, Second Edition