Sigmund Freud-курсовая на английском

Дата: 21.05.2016


The Herzen State Pedagogical University

“The interpretation of dreams”

(The interpretation of dreams by Sigmund Freud)

Course Project
In English
2nd year student
Sinkevitch D.
230 group

Saint-Petersburg 2002


«The Interpretation of Dreams» provides plenty of Freud's dreams in his own
interpretation, among which the famous dream of Irma's injection, which he
considers a key issue in understanding the mysteries of dream life. It
opens Chapter II («The Method Of Interpreting Dreams: An Analysis Of A
Specimen Dream») and provides material for an analysis covering several
pages ahead. Just as Freud himself maintained, the analysis of the dream is
not complete but it was here that Freud for the first time asserted that
dreams are the disguised fulfilment of unconscious wishes. The explanation
of the dream is quite simple: it tries to hide Freud's lack of satisfaction
with the treatment given to a patient of his, Irma, and throw the guilt of
partial failure upon others, exonerate Freud of other professional errors
it also hints at. Dream interpretation also provides a dream psychology and
many other issues. The volume is extremely inventive and rich in
information, and, in its author's view, it is his most important work.

Chapter 1. How this book start.
Freud was both a medical doctor and a philosopher. As a doctor, he was
interested in charting how the human mind affected the body, particularly
in forms of mental illness, such as neurosis and hysteria, and in finding
ways to cure those mental illnesses. As a philosopher, Freud was interested
in looking at the relationship between mental functioning and certain basic
structures of civilization, such as religious beliefs. Freud believed, and
many people after him believe, that his theories about how the mind worked
uncovered some basic truths about how an individual self is formed, and how
culture and civilization operate.
In 1897 Sigmund Freud began his famous course of self-analysis. He had
already noticed that dreams played an important role in his analysis of
neurotic and «hysterical» patients. As he encouraged them to free-
associate, that is, talk about whatever came into their minds, they often
referred to their dreams, which would set off other associations and often
illuminate other important connections in their past experience. Freud also
had noticed that hallucinations in psychotic patients were very much like
dreams. Based on these observations, Freud began to believe that sleeping
dreams were nearly always, like day-dreams, wish fulfillment.
Freud had always been an active dreamer, and much of his self-analysis
focused on dreams, convincing him conclusively in the wish-fulfillment
theory. Within a few months of beginning his self-analysis, he decided to
write a book about dreams. He looked into the literature and was pleased to
see that no one had proposed his idea before. In fact, most people believed
dreams were just nonsense. It took Freud about two years to write The
Interpretation of Dreams, finishing it in September 1897. It was published
late in the year and released in 1900. Freud was paid about $209.
The book explained the double level of dreams: the actual dream with its
«manifest content,» and the dream's true if hidden meaning, or «latent
content.» The idea of dream as wish-fulfillment was explained, and he
introduced the theory that sexuality was an important part of childhood, a
shocking idea at the time. He also outlined a sort of universal language of
dreams, by which they might be interpreted.
Most people now agree that The Interpretation of Dreams was Freud's most
important work, but it took eight years to sell the 600 copies printed in
1900. In the first year and a half, no scientific journal reviewed it and
few other periodicals mentioned it. It was largely ignored, though in
psychological journals it received crushing reviews. One critic warned that
«uncritical minds would be delighted to join in this play with ideas and
would end up in complete mysticism and chaotic arbitrariness.»
In 1910, however, Freud's overall work was becoming better known and a
second edition was printed. There would be six more in Freud's lifetime,
the last in 1929. He changed very little in the book, only adding
illustrations, elaborating certain ideas, and adding to the portions on
symbolism. The book was translated into English and Russian in 1913, and
into six more languages by 1938. Though he was a prolific writer, The
Interpretation of Dreams remained Freud's most original work. Despite the
initial cold reception, Freud himself knew it was a breakthrough. «Insight
such as this falls to one's lot but once in a lifetime,» he wrote.

Chapter 2. The dream theory.
According to Freud (in his book The Interpretation of Dreams), dreams are
symbolic fulfillments of wishes that can't be fulfilled because they've
been repressed. Often these wishes can't even be expressed directly in
consciousness, because they are forbidden, so they come out in dreams—but
in strange ways, in ways that often hide or disguise the true wish behind
the dream.
Freud believed that dreams acted as a form of fantasy, a defense mechanism
against the unacceptable urges of the id. Fantasy allows the individual to
act out events in the imagination, which can satiate the urges of the id
which are repressed. Freud theorized that dreams were a subconscious
manifestation of these repressed urges, and that they served mainly to
satisfy sexual and aggressive tendencies. The interpretation of dreams has
come to be one of the aspects of Freud's studies which are most
popularized, as he took the importance of dreams far more seriously than
many of those who came before him or studied after him, even students of
his own science: psychoanalysis.

Freud recognized that the interpretation of dreams was a very difficult
task. Many barriers to clear insights into dreams exist, and many elements
of contamination may render the analysis of the dream as being incorrect,
or make the dream impossible to analyze at all. One of the biggest
problems was remembering the dream in detail. As dreams take place on a
totally subconscious level, there is a good chance that aspects of dreams
will be muddled or forgotten completely, aspects which may have had a
significant impact on the analysis of the dream. He also realized that a
the patient might fabricate the missing pieces of the dream, which would
render it ingenuine and result in an inaccurate interpretation. Freud
stated that the dream must be accepted as total fact if the dream is to be
analyzed, which seems contrary to his typical practice of constantly
questioning the validity of patients' statements.

Another significant barrier to interpretation of dreams is the fact that
there is often no textbook diagnosis available. This is to say that dreams
of comprised of symbolism, and that what an object symbolizes for the
individual varies from person to person. Therefore, the analyst must rely
on the patient to provide significant amounts of background information in
order to determine what objects symbolize. Of course, another obvious
problem is that the meaning of the symbol may be repressed as well, or stem
from a repressed event, and therefore the patient can offer no explanation
of the symbol. Freud himself admitted in his works that he often
encountered problems with patients not divulging enough background
information, and that aspects of dreams were left uninterpreted.

Freud still offered some symbols as constants, however, and felt that all
people incorporated these symbols and their meanings into dreams.However,
the emphasis on sexual imagery is a majority of this text, ranging form
symbolism of the genitals and other erogenous zones, to symbolism of sexual
acts such as intercourse and orgasm. This is perhaps one of his most
assaulted theories, as it not only states that there is a constant (or law)
among all individuals that «object a = meaning a,» but also that there is
such an absurd amount of these sexual symbols that almost every dream could
be boiled down to nothing more than an expression of sexuality. Though
sexuality was certainly a present theme in nearly all Freud's works, modern
analysts do not seem to find such a gross amount of sexual content in
Dreams use two main mechanisms to disguise forbidden wishes: CONDENSATION
and DISPLACEMENT. Condensation is when a whole set of images is packed into
a single image or statement, when a complex meaning is condensed into a
simpler one. Condensation corresponds to METAPHOR in language, where one
thing is condensed into another («love is a rose, and you'd better not pick
it»—this metaphor condenses all the qualities of a rose, including smell
and thorns, into a single image). Displacement is where the meaning of one
image or symbol gets pushed onto something associated with it, which then
displaces the original image. Displacement corresponds to the mechanism of
METONYMY in language, where one thing is replaced by something
corresponding to it. (An example of metonymy is when you evoke an image of
a whole thing by naming a part of it—when you say «the crown» when you
mean the king or royalty, for example, or you say «twenty sails» when you
mean twenty ships. You displace the idea of the whole thing onto a part
associated with that thing). You might think of condensation and metaphor
as being like Saussure's syntagmatic relations, which happen in a chain (x
is y is z), and displacement and metonymy being like Saussure's associative

This work was, by his own assessment, Sigmund Freud's greatest. In the
process of showing how seemingly meaningless fragments of dreams suggest
the whole range of personal issues in the dreamer's present and past life,
Freud lays out the basis for a new psychology and therapy. And anyone can
use this book to know more about his life.


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