Dream Reader

Contemporary Approaches to the Understanding of Dreams

By Anthony Shafton

Subjects: Dreams
Series: SUNY series in Dream Studies
Paperback : 9780791426180, 692 pages, July 1995
Hardcover : 9780791426173, 692 pages, July 1995

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Table of contents


Part I: REM, etc.

1. REM, etc.

Part II: Schools

2. Freud
3. Jung
4. Existentialism
5. Culturalism
6. Gestalt

Part III: Topics

7. Catagogic/Anagogic
8. Dream and Symptom
9. Dream Styles
10. Dream Residues
11. Initial and Termination Dreams
12. The Non-interpretation of Dreams
13. Incubation
14. Lucidity
15. Re-entry
16. The Bo Tree Principle

List of Dreams
Index of Authors and Names
General Index

A comprehensive survey of contemporary approaches to understanding dreams. If you can have only one book on dreams, this is the one to have.


Dream Reader is a uniquely comprehensive survey of contemporary approaches to understanding and working with dreams. The general reader interested in exploring the world of dreams could not obtain a better introduction and grounding than from this book. Academic psychologists, therapists, and professional dreamworkers alike will find it to be an incomparable survey and sampling of the growing literature on dreaming.

In Part I, Shafton summarizes sleep laboratory discoveries, then considers theories about dream generation and meaning that have arisen from these discoveries. Part II discusses major Euro-American schools of dream interpretation in the twentieth century: Freud, Jung, Existential, Cultural, and Gestalt. Also included are chapters dealing with various topics of interest: the dream styles of people of both genders, and of people with certain psychiatric diagnoses; non-interpretive approaches to dreamwork; dream incubation; lucid dreaming; dream re-entry; dreams of the blind; post-traumatic nightmares; and many more. Dream Reader provides an integrated review of the whole literature of dream psychology—the clinical, academic, and also the serious popular literature. It also presents sizeable extracts from the original sources for the reader's own critical evaluation.


"Dream Reader by Anthony Shafton is a book so unique in its combination of scholarship, clarity, and down-to-earth feeling about dreams that I find it hard to fully express the excitement and satisfaction I felt on reading it. This is the first definitive and comprehensive sourcebook to cover the classical, the research, and the current theoretical contributions to our understanding of the nature and usefulness of dreams. The author has covered an incredible body of literature, subjecting all that he has read to evaluative and integrative commentary. " — Montague Ullman, M. D. , co-author of Dream Telepathy and Working With Dreams, and Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Albert Einstein College of Medicine