A lecture by psychoanalyst Dany Nobus, Chair of the Freud Museum, London.

Hypnos Project

16 MAY 2016
Upper Stage
What is the meaning of dreams? The "royal road to the unconscious", random firings of neurons during the REM-phase or the reason we go to sleep?
Free admission
Throughout history and across cultures, dreams have been an endlessly fascinating human mental phenomenon, sometimes taken as premonitory revelations, sometimes employed as a source of inspiration for the creative imagination, and (with Freud) also used as the 'royal road to the unconscious'. In addition, although it is generally accepted that dreams require (a certain type of) sleep, the phantasmagoria of the dream and in particular its mixture of fantasy and reason, has led artists and philosophers to consider the possibility that the whole of human existence is but one lengthy dream, and that when we go to sleep it is merely to dream on. This stands in stark contrast to the current prevailing scientific explanation of dreams, which reduces them to a physiological process that is characterised by random firings of neurons during the REM-phase of sleep.
In this lecture the wonder and richness of dreams as a distinctly human, highly individual, and occasionally disturbing production of the human mind will be explored, and the relationship between dreams, fantasies, illusions and hallucinations will be presented as a shifting boundary between the various formations of the human creative imagination.
Dany Nobus is Professor of Psychoanalytic Psychology and Pro-Vice-Chancellor for External Affairs at Brunel University London, where he also directs the MA Programme in Psychoanalysis and Contemporary Society. In addition, he is the Chair of the Freud Museum London and the author of numerous books and papers on the history, theory and practice of psychoanalysis.


Concept: Afroditi Panagiotakou
Curated and organized by: Pasqua Vorgia

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