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Richardson, G.A. Moore, R.A. (1963). On the Manifest Dream in Schizophrenia. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 11:281-302.

(1963). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 11:281-302

On the Manifest Dream in Schizophrenia

George A. Richardson, M.D. and Robert A. Moore, M.D.

SUMMARY

Repeated questioning of the presence (or absence) of significant criteria in manifest dream content making possible a differentiation of the dreams of schizophrenics from nonschizophrenics has led to a research project described in this paper. Sample dreams, taken from schizophrenic and nonschizophrenic patients, were randomly scattered and submitted to "diagnostic judgment" by judges, both psychoanalysts and clinical psychiatrists. At first glance it seemed that there was a higher accuracy of diagnosis of nonschizophrenia than schizophrenia, but this turned out to be more apparent than real; i.e., it represented more a reluctance to diagnose schizophrenia. The over-all accuracy of diagnoses was found to be 55.7 per cent, and approximately the same for each group. Though low, it was significantly better than chance probability (phi coefficient < .01). A surprising discovery was that the judges seemed to be arriving independently at identical although often incorrect decisions. A second phase of our study, aimed at investigating this observation, revealed essentially two significant findings. First, the judges' expectation that the schizophrenic dreams would contain much unrepressed sexual and aggressive content was not borne out in fact. Second, the judges advanced the proposition that the schizophrenic dreams might

more often convey a sense of bizarreness, strangeness, or incomprehensibility, an expectation that was borne out in fact.

The theoretical discussion begins with a comparison of a metapsychological formulation of mental processes in sleep and dream formation with mental processes in schizophrenia, and then goes on to propose a metapsychological formulation of the schizophrenic in sleep and in dream formation. As an accompaniment of the phenomenon of sleep, it is suggested that more energy in neutralized form becomes available to the schizophrenic ego, energy which may be utilized for censorship, so that the defensive forces (repression) are relatively stronger during sleeping than waking. Also, the energy which accrued to the ego during sleep is lost with awaking, a phenomenon that may interfere with the schizophrenic's dream work, in particular with secondary revision. It is suggested that the significant finding of bizarreness, strangeness, or incomprehensibility may be a consequence of the relative failure of secondary revision.

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