Neuroscience, Dreams & Psychotherapy - Prof. Mark Solms
Freud claimed that dreams provide unique insights into human motivation. The discovery of the brain mechanisms of REM sleep (between the 1950s and 70s) cast considerable doubt on this: REM dreaming occurs automatically in 90-minute cycles and it is generated by a mindless part of the brainstem. This lecture will present findings which show that dreaming is not in fact isomorphic with REM sleep, that it does not occur automatically, and that it is generated by a part of the brain that is deeply implicated in emotion, motivation, and memory. Recent findings will also be presented from an ongoing study which is seeking to establish the biological function of dreaming.
- Solms, M. (2021) Dreams and the Hard Problem of Consciousness. In: Della Sala, S. (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Behavioral Neuroscience, vol. 3. Elsevier, pp. 678–686
About the Speaker:
Professor Mark Solms
Professor Mark Solms is best known for his discovery of the forebrain mechanisms of dreaming, and for his pioneering integration of psychoanalytic theories and methods with those of modern neuroscience. He holds the Chair of Neuropsychology at the University of Cape Town and Groote Schuur Hospital (Departments of Psychology and Neurology). His other positions have included: Honorary Lecturer in Neurosurgery at St. Bartholomew’s & Royal London School of Medicine, Director of the International Neuro-Psychoanalysis Centre, London, and Director of the Arnold Pfeffer Center for Neuro-Psychoanalysis at the New York Psychoanalytic Institute.
Professor Solms’ books include: Clinical Studies in Neuro-Psychoanalysis (winner of the NAAP’s Gradiva Award Best Book, Science Category in 2001), The Brain and The Inner World (2002), and most recently: Hidden Spring: A Journey to the Source of Consciousness (2021).