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mental activity associated with the rapid-eye-movement (REM) period of sleep. It is commonly made up of a number of visual images, scenes or thoughts expressed in terms of seeing rather than in those of the other senses or in words. Electroencephalograph studies, measuring the electrical activity of the brain during REM sleep, have shown that young adults dream for 1 1-2 to 2 hours of every 8-hour period of sleep. Infants spend an average of 50% of their sleep in the REM phase (they are believed to dream more often than adults) a figure which decreases steadily with age. During dreams, blood pressure and heart rate increase, and breathing is quickened, but the body is otherwise immobile. Studies have shown that sleepers deprived of dream-sleep are likely to become irritable and lose coordination skills. Unusually frightening dreams are called nightmares, and daydreams are constructed fantasies that occur while the individual is awake. Studies have demonstrated the existence of lucid dreaming, where the individual is aware that he is dreaming and has a degree of control over his dream.

Sigmund FreudFreud, Sigmund
, 1856–1939, Austrian psychiatrist, founder of psychoanalysis. Born in Moravia, he lived most of his life in Vienna, receiving his medical degree from the Univ. of Vienna in 1881.

His medical career began with an apprenticeship (1885–86) under J.
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, in his pioneering work The Interpretation of Dreams (1900, tr. 1913), was one of the first to emphasize dreams as keys to the unconscious. He distinguished the manifest content of dreams—the dream as it is recalled by the individual—from the latent content or the meaning of the dream, which Freud saw in terms of wish fulfillment. C. G. JungJung, Carl Gustav
, 1875–1961, Swiss psychiatrist, founder of analytical psychology. The son of a country pastor, he studied at Basel (1895–1900) and Zürich (M.D., 1902).
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 held that dreams function to reveal the unconscious mind, anticipate future events, and give expression to neglected areas of the dreamer's personality. Another theory, which PET scan studies appear to support, suggests that dreams are a result of electrical energy that stimulates memories located in various regions of the brain.


See J. A. Hobson, The Dreaming Brain (1988); M.-L. von Franz, Dreams (1991).


An involuntary series of visual, auditory, or kinesthetic images, emotions, and thoughts occurring in the mind during sleep or a sleeplike state, which take the form of a sequence of events or of a story, having a feeling of reality but totally lacking a feeling of free will.


a. mental activity, usually in the form of an imagined series of events, occurring during certain phases of sleep
b. (as modifier): a dream sequence
a. a sequence of imaginative thoughts indulged in while awake; daydream; fantasy
b. (as modifier): a dream world
References in periodicals archive ?
say Tjukurrpa Wati yirna pirni-ya ngurra ngaangka man old many-they place this-in palunyaku ninti purlkanya nyinarra.
Myers, Hamilton, Tonkinson, Wild (not referenced) and recently Dussart amongst others, have dwelt extensively in this area of 'tradition' as creative agency where the apparently fixed structure of Tjukurrpa defies a unidirectional chronological history.
In the second chapter, she characterizes some of the fundamental religious concepts common to Western Desert Aborigines, and offers her spatial and temporal analysis of the role of Tjukurrpa and its sustenance via individual human agency.
Tjukurrpa, the dream--generally identified as kapukurri--and the body, are texts that are kept open to be read, cut and reorganised in a pragmatic and aesthetic manner.
10) While locating different domains of kanyininpa within Pintupi culture, he argued that they all derived from the ritual occasion when older men mediated the authority of the tjukurrpa (Dreaming) to younger men at Law time (Myers 1980:313).
A major aspect of 'looking after' country is through ritual--in this case, ritual that is from the Tjukurrpa (Dreaming) that is close to the community.
He finds that Wilkinkarra is central to the tjukurrpa (Dreaming) narratives of the Pintupi and Kukatja, that there is a predominance of similarities across dialect groups in these histories, and that they can provide an overview of the origins of the lake, ones involving powerful Dreaming beings (and sexual jealousy) and country devastated by fire-storm.
Abstract: Wilkinkarra (Lake Mackay), a huge salt lake in the Western Desert region of Australia, features extensively in the tjukurrpa (Dreaming) narratives of the Pintupi and Kukatja.