fo·cus / ˈfōkəs/ • n. (pl. fo·cus·es or fo·ci / ˈfōˌsī; -ˌkī/ ) 1. the center of interest or activity: this generation has made the environment a focus of attention. ∎ an act of concentrating interest or activity on something: our focus on the customer's requirements. ∎ Geol. the point of origin of an earthquake. Compare with epicenter. ∎ Med. the principal site of an infection or other disease. ∎ Linguistics the part of a sentence given prominence, usually for emphasis or contrast, e.g., Bob in it was Bob who came, not Bill.Compare with rheme.2. the state or quality of having or producing clear visual definition: his face is rather out of focus. ∎ another term for focal point. ∎ the point at which an object must be situated with respect to a lens or mirror for an image of it to be well defined. ∎ a device on a lens that can be adjusted to produce a clear image.3. Geom. one of the fixed points from which the distances to any point of a given curve, such as an ellipse or parabola, are connected by a linear relation.• v. (fo·cused, fo·cus·ing or fo·cussed, fo·cus·sing) [intr.] 1. (of a person or their eyes) adapt to the prevailing level of light and become able to see clearly: try to focus on a stationary object. ∎ [tr.] bring (one's eyes) into such a state: trying to focus his bleary eyes on Corbett. ∎ [tr.] adjust the focus of (a telescope, camera, or other instrument): they were focusing a telescope on a star. ∎ (of rays or waves) meet at a single point. ∎ [tr.] (of a lens) make (rays or waves) meet at a single point. ∎ [intr.] (of light, radio waves, or other energy) become concentrated into a sharp beam of light or energy. ∎ [tr.] (of a lens) concentrate (light, radio waves, or energy) into a sharp beam.2. (focus on) pay particular attention to: the study will focus on a number of areas in Wales. ∎ [tr.] concentrate: the course helps to focus and stimulate your thoughts. ∎ [tr.] Linguistics place the focus on (a part of a sentence).DERIVATIVES: fo·cus·er n.
Focus ★★½ 2001 (PG-13)
Based on a 1945 novel by playwright Arthur Miller, this exploration of anti-Semitism and bigotry features Macy as Larry Newman, a nebbish personnel worker who lives with his invalid mother. After 20 years on the job, he is demoted after he gets glasses because they make him look “too Jewish” to his bosses. After quitting his job in protest, he is interviewed for a new job by Gertrude (Dern), a woman that he had turned away from his firm because she may or may not have been a Jew. A whirlwind romance ensues, and the two are soon married as their neighborhood is becoming a battleground of ethnic tension. Strong-arm tactics are used on local newsstand owner Finkelstein (Paymer), and he warns the Newmans about collective hate. Macy gives a great performance, but the material is a bit blunt and preachy. 106m/C VHS, DVD . William H. Macy, Laura Dern, David Paymer, Meat Loaf Aday, Michael Copeman, Kenneth Welsh, Kay Hawtrey, Joseph Ziegler, Arlene Meadows; D: Neil Slavin; W: Kendrew Lascelles; C: Juan Ruiz-Anchia; M: Mark Adler.
1. n. the point at which rays of light converge after passing through a lens.
2. n. the principal site of an infection or other disease.
3. vb. (in ophthalmology) to accommodate (see accommodation).
So focal XVIII.