In the sentence "[...] once anger prevails our consciousness we should immediately distract ourselves to avoid its subsequent effects.", I have directly translated from Turkish, but I was told that there is not such an idiom in English(I mean to prevail consciousness). I guess you can easily infer what I want to convey by that idiom, how do I correct it?

  • How about becomes apparent?
    – Lawrence
    Nov 8, 2015 at 12:29

3 Answers 3


There is the metaphorical expression flood one's consciousness, not all that common but quite acceptable.

An example from Cynicism and the Evolution of the American Dream, by Wilber W. Caldwell:

The fourth way in which the American media creates and stimulates widespread cynicism has to do with the way the media floods our consciousness.

An example having a more obviously non-sentient subject, from Libuvim, is:

When the waves of the ocean of our life flood our consciousness ...

but this is getting rather gushy.

Dictionaries give different senses that point to the 'deluge' metaphor here; RHK Webster's gives perhaps the closest sense:

flood vt (9) to overwhelm with an abundance of something

If you're happy with a less word-for-word paraphrase,

Anger surged through him

He clenched his fists as the anger coursed through him

are more idiomatic (ie used more often).


The problem with your phrase is that prevail is an intransitive verb, so you need to use a preposition:

[...] once anger prevails in our consciousness, [...]

which means that anger is the prevalent, most active component of our consciousness; or maybe

[...] once anger prevails over our consciousness, [...]

which treats anger as an opposite to our consciousness, implying you can be so angry as to become unconscious.

  • I guess "to prevail" has more than meaning than I want. It is a bit strong. Is there any other choice?
    – frosh
    Nov 8, 2015 at 10:17
  • Sure. overtakes, takes over, gets hold of, invades, enters, possesses, occupies, is in, influences, affects, disorders, inflames, fills .... [one's mind] Nov 8, 2015 at 11:21

Not knowing either Turkish or the original text, I would say anger dominates one's consciousness.

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