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Flashcards in 4 Freud's theory of dreams Deck (29)
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When did Freud publish The Interpretation of Dreams?

The Interpretation of Dreams was published in 1900


What is the German name of The Interpretation of Dreams?

Die Traumdeutung


What do dreams represent for Freud?

Meaningful expressions of unconscious material – "the royal road to a knowledge of the unconscious mind"


Why are dreams like symptoms and what two things do they express?

Dreams tell us what is ailing the unconscious.

They express;

1. Unconscious intrapsychic conflict (biological/emotional needs vs safety/security needs)

2. Events and situations desired or feared by the dreamer


All dreams are WHAT?

Hallucinatory wish-fulfilments which, if they were not dreamt, would leave the dreamer frustrated, and this would wake the sleeper. So if you have a wish while asleep it is embodied and fulfilled in a dream, so you stay asleep.


What happens in nightmares and anxious dreams?

The underlying repressed wish is not completely disguised. It is felt by the dreamer - hence the anxiety.


Anxious dreams are the failure of WHAT?

In anxious dreams there is a failure to reach an acceptable compromise between the wish (id) and the censor (superego).


What causes the anxiety in anxious dreams?

An underlying repressed wish, which is not completely disguised. It is felt by the dreamer, hence the anxiety.


What is the difference between the latent and manifest content of the dream?

Latent content = revealed meaning, the true nature of the wish

Manifest content = the dream as it appears to the dreamer upon awakening


What is the dreamwork?

The processes whereby the dream comes into being - the means by which the unconscious wish comes to be expressed.


What are the four process of dreamwork censorship?

1. Condensation
2. Displacement
3. Visual Representation
4. Secondary Revision


Within dreamwork, what is condensation?

Condensation is when several images are fused with one another to create a composite – e.g. a single person constructed from the characteristics of several people. Condensation is brought about by latent elements that have something in common being combined and fused into a single unity in the manifest dream. Freud points out that the process is like constructing a new concept out of something that various people, things and places have in common. The new temporary concept has this common element as its nucleus.


Within dreamwork, what is displacement?

Displacement is when an idea/thing is replaced in the dream by a related idea/thing, or the emotional intensity of one idea can be transferred to another.


Within dreamwork, what is visual representation?

The use of concrete/visual symbols (e.g., sitting on the object) to stand for some abstract thought (e.g., ‘possession’)


Within dreamwork, what is secondary revision?

On those moments just before waking from a dream, our pre-conscious mind molds our latent creations into a form that is sensible to our waking intelligence. This pre-interpretation and organization creates even more distortion.


How can the latent content of dreams be discovered?

The latent content of dreams can be discovered using the method of free association


What is the technique of free association?

Free-association is the basic rule of psychoanalysis – the client speaks their thoughts absolutely spontaneously without effort or concentration, regardless of how illogical, embarrassing, non-sensical or silly they may seem.


What is the cognitive psychology criticism of Freud's theory of dreams?

Mainstream cognitive psychologists claim that the activation of memory elements in dreaming is random and arbitrary - and unlikely to serve any adaptive function.


Is all dream content unconscious?

According to contemporary research, no. There is both conscious and unconscious material. I mean, duh, obviously.


How do you explain weird dreams?

No one really can.


Are dreams always a reflection of intrapsychic conflict?

Nope. Not all dreams are the work of censorship, nor do they always reflect conflict.


What did Freud hypothesize to be the purpose of dreams?

To protect sleep. Because if you were conscious of the wish not being fulfilled you would wake up and try to fulfill it.


What is the activation synthesis theory of dreams?

You see things in dreams because your visual cortex is excited. You hear things because auditory cortex is excited. The forebrain connects all the images together in a futile attempt to make a story or an episode out of what's happening. The narrative doesn't mean anything.


What happens if you legion the ventromedial quadrant of the frontal lobe?

Person loses all motivation. Cannot perform any acts voluntarily. Only if instructed. Also stops dreaming.


How much do children dream?

Children under age six or seven do not dream often or well and children do not have adult-like dreaming until age 10. This contradicts Freud's hypothesis that the wish-fulfillment aspect of dreaming would be most prominent in children.


Are dreams usually negative or positive?

The various negative elements seem to be more prominent than the corresponding positive elements. Negative emotions are more common than positive emotions and aggressive interactions are more common than friendly interactions.


What is the threat simulation theory of dreams?

That in dreams we act out potentially dangerous situations to be better prepared for them. Revonsuo, 2004


What four points from contemporary neuroscience does Solms raise to offer support for Freud's theory of dreams?

(a) Dreams are meaningful (this was Freud’s most fundamental claim);
(b) Dreams require interpretation (i.e., the concrete images stand for something else – usually more abstract and complex thoughts – which need decoding);
(c) Dreams are motivated (i.e., dream plots are shaped by basic emotions and drives, and perhaps especially by the dopaminergic “seeking” system;
(d) Dream cognition is disinhibited (i.e., it lacks prefrontal, executive modulation – “secondary process” inhibition in Freud’s terminology).


What is suggested by the link between brain structures responsible for dreaming and those responsible for biological emotions and motivations?

This is consistent with the idea that dreams give expressions to some instinctual drives that cannot be expressed consciously.

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