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Cavell, M. (1998). On a Contribution to a Future Scientific Study of Dream Interpretation. R. Sand. Pp. 527-547. Psychoanal Q., 67(3):530-531.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: On a Contribution to a Future Scientific Study of Dream Interpretation. R. Sand. Pp. 527-547

(1998). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 67(3):530-531

On a Contribution to a Future Scientific Study of Dream Interpretation. R. Sand. Pp. 527-547

Marcia Cavell

Sand distinguishes Freud's theory of dream interpretation from a much older, traditional theory, traceable as far back as the Greek philosopher Zeno (4th century b.c.). Freud's theory focuses on the latent dream content; it claims that dreams are caused by repressed wishes, and that the form which a dream takes is

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the result of censorship together with certain laws of primitive mental functioning. These Freudian claims are at odds with contemporary work in neurophysiology and dream research. In contrast, the traditional theory focuses on the manifest content and makes no causal claims; it uses the manifest content to illumine themes and problems on the dreamer's mind. The traditional rather than the Freudian theory, Sand suggests, points in the direction of future research, and is in any case the theory to which, overwhelmingly, clinical practice conforms.

It strikes me that the difference between a classic Freudian approach to dream interpretation and the approach Sand suggests is part of a much more pervasive difference between traditional psychoanalytic theory in general and ongoing clinical practice. The terrain on which psychoanalytic theory-building should take place may lie in taking systematic notice of this gap.

Article Citation

Cavell, M. (1998). On a Contribution to a Future Scientific Study of Dream Interpretation. R. Sand.. Psychoanal. Q., 67(3):530-531

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