Dreams, Phantasms and Memories


Interdisciplinary Conference in Gdańsk, Poland,

19th-20th September 2013


University of Gdańsk – Research Unit for Dream, Memory and Imagination Studies:


Federal University of Paraná (Brazil)

McGill University (Canada)

Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3 (France)

University of São Paulo (Brazil)

There are a number of reasons why it is worthwhile to study dreams. This topic is currently an especially relevant and important one for two primary reasons. Firstly, the current zeitgeist is one of rationality and pragmatism, almost exclusively oriented towards measurable profit, tangible effect and spectacular success. As a result, phenomena such as dreams, fancies, secret fantasies, and remnants of memories are often neglected. Secondly, in the light of postmodern suspicions which question any permanent foundations of existence, truth, memory and identity, and in a situation where our whole reality reveals a distinctly phantasmatic character, a temptation arises to treat the realm of dream and imagination as especially distinguished – as the most important way of “being-in-the-world”, or perhaps even the only one which we can access.

Our conference will encompass the problem areas of dream, imagination and memory in their broad contexts. We invite researchers representing various academic disciplines: psychoanalysis, psychology, anthropology, philosophy, sociology, neurophysiology, history of literature, theatre studies, film studies, consciousness studies, memory studies, gender studies, postcolonial studies, animal studies et al. This conference welcomes both experienced representatives of dream studies and those scholars who have not yet researched dreams but share our conviction about their significance. We look forward to receiving closely focused paper proposals (e.g. “Dreams of the homeless”), as well as synthesising ones (e.g. “Modern philosophy in relation to dream and imagination”). We will be happy to hear from both experienced scholars and young academics at the start of their careers, as well as undergraduate and graduate students. We also invite all persons interested in participating in the conference as listeners, without presenting their papers. We hope that due to its interdisciplinary nature, the conference will bring many interesting observations on and discussions about the role of dream, memory and imagination in the present-day world.

Our repertoire of suggested topics is as follows:

I Dream and Imagination

1 Cultural dimension

- cultural diversification of dreams

- dream and religious experience

- national dreams

- stereotypes about dreams

- dream in folk beliefs

- dreams dreamt by animals

- animals in dreams and fantasies

2 Social dimension

- dream and sex/gender

- dream and profession (dreams of doctors, dreams of chefs, dreams of prostitutes, dreams of soldiers, etc.)

- dream and social standing (dreams of businesspeople, dreams of the homeless, dreams of criminals, dreams of scientists, etc.)

- dream and personal life (dreams of single people, dreams of bigamists, dreams of single mothers, dreams of widowers, etc.)

3 Philosophical dimension

- subject of the dream

- dream and consciousness

- dream and identity

- dream and language

- dream and thinking

- daydream

4 Therapeutic dimension

- healing properties of dreams and phantasms

- dreams and trauma

- dreams and fantasies in diagnostics and therapy of somatic illnesses

- problem-solving dreams

- functions of dreams

- meaning of dreams

- dreams in psychotherapy

5 Neurophysiological dimension

- dream and brain

- dreams in a laboratory

- recording of dreams and thoughts

- manipulating dreams

- dream science and science fiction

6 Parapsychological dimension

- lucid dreaming

- mutual dreaming

- dream and telepathy

- prophetic dreams

- dreams in parapsychology

7 Artistic dimension

- dreams, fantasies, and the arts

- dream and text

- dream and image

- oneiric poetics

- dreams in literature

- dreams in theatre

- dreams in film

II Imagination and Memory

- facts and phantasms

- political phantasms

- historiography and fantasising

- the realness of memories

- national traumas and mythologies

- reconstructions and narrations

- non-fiction

- para-documentary film

- imagination in mnemonics

- forgetting

III Memory and Dream

- remembering dreams

- dreaming about remembered events

- dreaming to remember / dreaming to forget

- common dreams and collective memory

- inherited dreams

- dreams about dead loved ones

- dreams about long-gone eras

Please submit abstracts (no longer than 300 words) of your proposed 20-minute presentations, together with a short biographical note, by 31st May 2013 to:

Prof. Wojciech Owczarski, University of Gdańsk: wowczarski1@tlen.pl


Zofia Zuzanna Ziemann, Secretary of the conference: zofiaziemann@wp.pl

The confirmation of acceptance will be sent by 15th June 2013.

The conference language is English.

A selection of presented papers will be published in a post-conference volume.



University of Gdańsk – Research Unit for Dream, Memory and Imagination Studies:

Professor Wojciech Owczarski

Professor Tomasz Swoboda

Bartosz DÄ…browski, Ph.D.

Monika Żółkoś, Ph.D.

Honorary Organizing Committee:

Professor Maria Virginia Filomena Cremasco - Federal University of Paraná

Professor Paulo Cesar Endo - University of São Paulo

Professor Florence Godeau - Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3

Amanda Chalupa, M.Sc. Candidate - McGill University

On 21 September 2013 an additional panel for undergraduate and graduate students entitled "Dreams and Surrealism" will be held. It will be organized by Ph.D. students from the University of Gdansk under the supervision of prof. Wojciech Owczarski and the Research Unit for Dreams, Memory and Imagination Studies. The panel is addressed especially for graduate and undergraduate students, nevertheless, students are most welcome to participate in "Dreams, Phantasms and Memories" conference as well.

All details are available on www.dreams-and-surrealism.blogspot.com

Sourse: dreams

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