I'm looking for a word that means returning to the past or embracing old values, but words like "regression," "retrogression," and "atavism" all seem to have negative connotations attached to them.

Is there such a word that means "regression" in a positive sense?

  • Perhaps "conservative" or "traditionalist"? The problem, as I see it, is that regression, et al. carry a connotation of moving backwards. However (and correct me if I'm wrong), you're trying to positively express the adoption of traditional values. – Nick2253 Dec 10 '14 at 17:30
  • I'm trying to use the word in context of the Renaissance, where going back to ancient times and embracing Classical works/values became popular. – user3932000 Dec 10 '14 at 21:57
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    'Restoration' doesn't seem to have negative connotations (for the process). – Edwin Ashworth Dec 10 '14 at 22:52
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    Regression itself is positive, if it is regression from something negative. Regression of a cancerous growth is a good thing. – Drew Dec 11 '14 at 2:14
  • If you are trying to use the word in the context of the Renaissance, then how about "Renaissance" itself, meaning rebirth? – Sc0ttyD Dec 11 '14 at 19:58

You might call this a revival of the old value, or a return to form.

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  • Amusingly enough, this answer earned me the revival badge. – Kevin Jan 13 '15 at 19:39

since you mentioned the word embracing, you could simply say "re-embracing" other alternatives might include "returning to [innocence, your youth, your culture, your values, your real self ] "

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