Suspension of disbelief
Suspension of disbelief: Temporary acquiescence in the premises of a fictional work, regardless of reality or probability. Romantic poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge coined the phrase in his Biographia Literaria (1817), referring to “willing suspension of disbelief for the moment” as “poetic faith.” Some genres, such as fantasy and science fiction, routinely require suspension of disbelief, whereas other genres are more realistic. Generally speaking, audiences and readers are more willing to suspend disbelief when a story is internally consistent — i.e., when it remains true to its premises, believable within the imaginative world created by the author.
EXAMPLES: Readers of George Orwell’s Animal Farm (1945) suspend disbelief in the idea of pigs occupying political positions in a social hierarchy. Likewise, readers of J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series (1997—2007; adapted to film 2001—11) suspend disbelief in witches, wizards, and all things magical, whether the Sorting Hat that sorts first-year students into houses at Hogwarts; the existence of boggarts, dragons, and hippogriffs; or the attainment of immortality by splitting the soul into fragments.