Picture
Sigmund Freud
The pioneer of psychoanalysis Sigmund Freud (1856-1939) defined his concept of "the uncanny" as a sensation  that arises from perceiving an object or instance that is in some way familiar to us but that is also strange.  A good example would be a highly realistic doll - it is familiar to us because it looks like a human being, but is strange because it lacks the characteristics that let us know something is truly alive. The uncanny is, therefore, a sensation of strangeness, weirdness or eeriness that arises from a distorion of familiarity, Freud writes:

"There is no doubt that this belongs to the realm of the frightening, of what evokes fear and dread... The uncanny is that species of the frightening that goes back to what was once familiar".