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Gottesmann, C. (2006). Commentary on “Freudian Dream Theory, Dream Bizarreness, and the Disguise-Censor Controversy”. Neuropsychoanalysis, 8(1):27-32.

(2006). Neuropsychoanalysis, 8(1):27-32

Commentary on “Freudian Dream Theory, Dream Bizarreness, and the Disguise-Censor Controversy” Related Papers

Claude Gottesmann

Neurobiological Disturbances During The Dreaming-Sleep Stage Can Explain Dream Bizarreness Without Recourse to Censorship

After having studied Simon Boag's highly interesting and well-documented review, I would like to try to give an iconoclastic answer to the main consideration raised in his paper: Is it necessary to admit disguise-censorship to explain dream bizarreness? As a neuroscientist—albeit one with a psychoanalytic education—I will answer no, taking into account current neurobiological knowledge.

Dream bizarreness

The mentation function needs an activated brain. This occurs particularly during active waking as well as during the main dreaming-sleep stage (rapid-eye movement [REM] sleep). Indeed, the electrophysiological criteria as shown by the spontaneous electroencephalogram (EEG) are similar in both states: low amplitude and rapid waves (0-25 cps) and the same gamma rhythm (about 40 cps) (Linas & Ribary, 1993). However, in this context, two facts should already be underlined: (1) There is a high level of β waves (15-25 cps) and only few α waves (8-12 cps) characteristics of relaxed waking. (2) The γ rhythm synchronized over the cortical areas during waking becomes uncoupled during REM sleep, particularly between the perceptive areas and the frontal and prefrontal cortex (Perez-Garci, del Rio-Portilla, Guevara, Arce, & Corsi-cabrera, 2001), which points to noncoordination between cortical areas. It is of interest to mention that a lack of α waves (habituation deficit) and intracerebral disconnections are also observed in the mentation disturbances observed in schizophrenia (Meyer-Lindenberg et al.

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