In human anatomy, superficial describes objects near the body's surface as compared to other objects that may be deep. For example, skin is a superficial structure of the body and muscles are deep to skin. In addition, superficial muscles are those which are just under the skin, often the shape and size of which has an effect on a person's appearance.
Thus, the term is used to describe an observation or analysis that deals only with the most apparent and obvious features of some object, or phenomenon.
A person who exhibits a "superficial" comprehension of some or many subjects may be negatively attributed as being shallow, materialistic, and even exhibiting false emotions through an exaggerated affect display. Occasionally they may be pseudointellectual.