Dreaming : Journal of the Association for the Study of Dreams
Human Sciences Press, Inc., New York City

Volume 1, Number 4, December 1991


Contingency Analysis and Dream Content: The Night Metaphors
of a Pre-Freudian Anal Character

Calvin S. Hall and G. William Domhoff
Page 255

The Effects of Menstrual Cycle Hormones on Dreams
Wilma Bucci, Monica L. Creelman, and Sally K. Severino
Page 263

The Nightmare: A Failure in Dream Function
Milton Kramer
Page 277

Emotions in Dream and Waking Event Reports
Tore A. Nielsen, Daniel Deslauriers, and George W. Baylor
Page 287

The Effects of Dream Length on the Relationship Between
Primary Process in Dreams and Creativity

Glenn Livingston and Ross Levin
Page 301

Personality and Dreaming: The Dreams of People with Very
Thick or Very Thin Boundaries

Ernest Hartmann, Rachel Elkin, and Mithlesh Garg
Page 311

Hall, Calvin S.; Domhoff, G. William.
Contingency analysis and dream content: The night metaphors of a pre-Freudian anal character.
Dreaming: Journal of the Association for the Study of Dreams. Vol 1(4) 255-262, Dec 1991.


Eighty dreams collected by a young male Bostonian around 1900 are described, and examined by a technique called "contingency analysis". This involves tabulating manifest dream content elements in a number of different related classes, and examining the number of times elements in two or more classes occur together. In this man, dream content was examined for 14 classes of elements judged to relate to "anal" themes: dream elements in these classes co-occurred far more than expected by chance.

Key Words: dream; dream content; anal character; contingency analysis.

Bucci, Wilma; Creelman, Monica L.; Severino, Sally K.
The effects of menstrual cycle hormones on dreams.
Dreaming: Journal of the Association for the Study of Dreams. Vol 1(4) 263-276, Dec 1991.


Changes in contents and language style of dream reports during the menstrual cycle were evaluated in seven women diagnosed as having Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS). Dream diaries were scored for Referential Activity (RA), i.e., the degree to which subjective emotional experience is captured and expressed in the communicative verbal code. Mean scores for overall RA and for the four individual RA scales (Specificity, Concreteness, Imagery and Clarity), showed peaks in the early luteal phase, i.e., at the time of high gonadal hormone concentration. The dominant contents of dreams in the early luteal phase reflected emotions directed towards other people, in contrast to the early follicular and late luteal phase themes of passivity and self care. The results support the interaction of physiological, emotional and cognitive events as postulated by the multiple code theory. Several questions are considered concerning the precise impact of hormonal fluctuation on emotional information processing as reflected in dreams.

Key Words: dreaming; emotions; hormones; menstrual cycle; multiple code model.


Kramer, Milton.
The nightmare: A failure in dream function.
Dreaming: Journal of the Association for the Study of Dreams. Vol 1(4) 277-285, Dec 1991.


Sleep and dreaming are intimately related to the subjective state of the individual. Mood is systematically and differentially altered by sleep and dreams across the sleep period. Who and what we dream about determines how happy we are in the morning; while how sleepy we are is related to the amount of non-REM sleep we obtained. The mode of dream problem solving which occurs, progressive-sequential or repetitive-traumatic, may determine whether the night dreams will be successful in altering how one feels from night to morning. The Mood Regulatory Function of dreaming postulates, as did Freud, that the "emotional surge" which accompanies REM sleep is contained by the psychological experience of dreaming. The nightmare occurs when the integrative capacity of the dreamer is exceeded; not because of the content of the dream, but because of the altered emotional state of the dreamer and the associated hyperresponsiveness of the dreamer in this altered state. Theories of dreaming need to address dreams which go on automatically outside of awareness and those which enter awareness and have the capacity for an effect on the dreamer. The experience of the recalled dream, such as the nightmare, would permit the possibility of dreaming contributing to a psychological transformation in the dreamer.

Key Words: dreaming; nightmare; REM sleep; post-traumatic-stress disorder; dream function.


Nielsen, Tore A.; Deslauriers, Daniel; Baylor, George W.
Emotions in dream and waking event reports.
Dreaming: Journal of the Association for the Study of Dreams. Vol 1(4) 287-300, Dec 1991.


Twenty participants hand-wrote reports of their dreams and reports of waking life events and used an extensive lexicon of emotion words and types to rate the emotions experienced in each scene of each report. From these ratings, the incidence and intensity of 22 different emotion categories specified by a cognitive model of emotions was assessed. Emotions were found to be present in virtually all scenes of all dream reports and only one of the 22 emotion types was never used in the ratings. The incidence of most of the emotion types was similar to that of reports of important life events. There was also evidence that the incidence of positive emotions was lower in dream reports than event reports while the incidence of fear was higher. Specifically, the mean number of positive emotions per scene was lower and the proportion of fear was higher in dream reports than in event reports. These results are consistent with the notion that emotion is as much a part of dream experience as it is of important waking life experience. However, the results also indicate some unique features of these dream reports. The pattern of differences may be due to a process of emotion production that inhibits positive emotions while facilitating fear during dreaming. Such a process might also explain the frequent occurrence of frightening nightmares and may be consistent with a theory of dream function in which dreaming regulates emotion during sleep.

Key Words: dreaming; dream content; dream emotion; dream vs waking; emotion.


Livingston, Glenn; Levin, Ross.
The effects of dream length on the relationship between primary process in dreams and creativity.
Dreaming: Journal of the Association for the Study of Dreams. Vol 1(4) 301-309, Dec 1991.


The effects of dream length on the relationship between primary process in dreams and a measure of creativity unconfounded by IQ was investigated in a sample of 93 graduate students using the Auld, Goldenberg, & Weiss (1968) Scale of Primary Process Thought (SPPT) and a modified Wallach-Kogan (1965) creativity battery. Consistent with previous research, total and mean primary process were found to correlate significantly with creativity (r = .28, p < .01 and r = .23, p < .05, respectively). Both significant relationships disappeared, however, once the effects of dream length were partialled out, confirming Wood, Sebba, & Domino's (1989-90) contention that this relationship may be artificial. It is suggested that dream length as an individual difference in and of itself may thus be a more fruitful variable to examine in future research investigating the relationship between creativity and dreams.

Key Words: dreaming; dream length; primary process; creativity.


Hartmann, Ernest; Elkin, Rachel; Garg, Mithlesh.
Personality and dreaming: The dreams of people with very thick or very thin boundaries.
Dreaming: Journal of the Association for the Study of Dreams. Vol 1(4) 311-324, Dec 1991.


Several studies were done to explore the relationship of the personality measure Thin and Thick Boundaries to dream recall frequency and to dream content. In a large sample there was a highly significant positive correlation between thinness of boundaries, measured on the Boundary Questionnaire, and frequency of dream recall. A subsample of 64 "frequent dreamers" (seven or more dreams per week) scored significantly thinner than a group of 69 "nondreamers" on the Boundary Questionnaire and on each one of the twelve content categories of the questionnaire. Dream content was examined in smaller samples of subjects who scored either very thick or very thin. Dreams of the "thin" subjects were rated significantly more vivid, more emotional, and with more interaction between characters, compared to dreams of the "thick" subjects.

Key Words: dreaming; dream recall; dream content; boundaries; personality.

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