Dreaming is often characterized as lacking high-order cognitive skills. In two studies, we test the alternative hypothesis that the dreaming mind is highly similar to the waking mind. Multiple experience samples were obtained from late-night REM sleep and waking, following a systematic protocol described in Kahan . Results indicated that reported dreaming and waking experiences are surprisingly similar in their cognitive and sensory qualities. Concurrently, ratings of dreaming and waking experiences were markedly different on questions of general reality orientation and (...) logical organization . Consistent with other recent studies , experiences sampled from dreaming and waking were more similar with respect to their process features than with respect to their structural features. (shrink)
This study focuses on a set of dreams related to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and their aftermath, using content analysis and cognitive psychology to explore the interweaving of external public catastrophe and internal psychological processes. The study tests several recent claims in contemporary dream research, including the central image theory of Hartmann [Hartmann, E., & Basile, R. . Dream imagery becomes more intense after 9/11/01. Dreaming, 13, 61–66; Hartmann, E., & Brezler, T. . A systematic change in dreams (...) after 9/11/01. Sleep, 31, 213–218], the media exposure factor postulated by Propper [Propper, R. E., Stickgold, R., Keeley, R., & Christman, S. D. . Is television traumatic? Dreams, stress, and media exposure in the aftermath of September 11, 2001. Psychological Science, 18, 334–340], the continuity hypothesis of Domhoff [Domhoff, W. G. . Finding meaning in dreams: A quantitative approach. New York: Plenum], the cognitive and metacognitive approach of Kahan [Kahan, T. L. . Consciousness in dreaming: A metacognitive approach. In K. Bulkeley , Dreams: A reader on the religious, cultural, and psychological dimensions of dreaming . New York: Palgrave], and the threat simulation theory of Revonsuo [Revonsuo, A. . The reinterpretation of dreams: An evolutionary hypothesis of the function of dreaming. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 23, 877–901]. Our findings suggest the terrorist attacks had a tangible impact on the content of many people’s dreams, but did not fundamentally alter the cognitive processing features of their dreaming. The 9/11 attacks affected what they dreamed about, but not the way they dreamed. (shrink)
_The Old Regime and the Revolution_ is Alexis de Tocqueville's great meditation on the origins and meanings of the French Revolution. One of the most profound and influential studies of this pivotal event, it remains a relevant and stimulating discussion of the problem of preserving individual and political freedom in the modern world. Alan Kahan's translation provides a faithful, readable rendering of Tocqueville's last masterpiece, and includes notes and variants which reveal Tocqueville's sources and include excerpts from his drafts and (...) revisions. The introduction by France's most eminent scholars of Tocqueville and the French Revolution, Françoise Mélonio and the late François Furet, provides a brilliant analysis of the work. (shrink)
Thirty-eight “practiced” dreamers and 50 “novice” dreamers completed questionnaires assessing the cognitive, metacognitive, and emotional qualities of recent waking and dreaming experiences. The present findings suggest that dreaming cognition is more similar to waking cognition than previously assumed and that the differences between dreaming and waking cognition are more quantitative than qualitative. Results from the two studies were generally consistent, indicating that high-order cognition during dreaming is not restricted to individuals practiced in dream recall or self-observation. None of the measured (...) features was absent or infrequent in reports of either dreaming or waking experiences. Recollections of dreaming and waking experiences were similar for some cognitive features and different for other features. (shrink)
The Metacognitive, Affective, Cognitive Experience questionnaire was designed to assess metacognition across sleep and waking . The present research evaluates the psychometric properties of the MACE. Data from two recent studies were used to assess the inter-item consistency, test–retest reliability, and factorial, convergent, and discriminant validity of the MACE. Results show that the MACE is a reliable measure with good construct validity. Exploratory factor analyses revealed one self-regulation and two monitoring factors. One monitoring factor emphasized monitoring internal conditions; the other (...) emphasized monitoring external conditions. This factor structure is consistent with the Metacognitive Model . Tests of convergent and discriminant validity suggest that the MACE is assessing metacognition and is appropriately related to similar constructs such as mindfulness and self-consciousness. The implication of these findings as well as suggestions for research and clinical applications of the MACE are discussed. (shrink)
Evidence of reflective awareness and metacognitive monitoring during REM sleep dreaming poses a significant challenge to the commonly held view of dream cognition as necessarily deficient relative to waking cognition. To date, dream metacognition has not received the theoretical or experimental attention it deserves. As a result, discussions of dream cognition have been underrepresented in theoretical accounts of consciousness. This paper argues for using a converging measures approach to investigate the range and limits of cognition and metacognition across the sleep–wakefulness (...) cycle. The paradigm developed by LaBerge and his colleagues to study "lucid-control" dreaming offers one such framework for relating phenomenological, cognitive, and physiological measures. In a lucid-control dream, the dreamer is both aware that the experimental context is a dream and has the ability to intentionally regulate aspects of the dream . Subjects can make patterns of deliberate eye movements to signal from the dream and thus index significant events such as the time of lucidity onset and the completion of previously agreed-upon tasks in the dream. Lucid dreaming and other examples of reflective awareness during dreaming have important implications for models of human cognition. The existence of these phenomena raises fundamental questions about current assumptions regarding "state" constraints on consciousness and cognition. (shrink)
We argue that Henrich et al. do not go far enough in their critique: Sample diversification, while important, will not lead to the detection of generalizable principles. For that it will be necessary to broaden the range of contexts in which data are gathered. We demonstrate the power of contexts to alter results even in the presence of sample diversification.
24 undergraduates were blindfolded and walked through paths laid out on a floor to investigate whether the orientation of Ss' cognitive maps (CMs) could be determined after they had learned a path by walking through it. Given the assumption that the CM is picturelike, it was predicted that it has a specific orientation, which implies that tests in which the CM is assumed to be aligned with the path should be less difficult than tests in which the CM is hypothesized (...) to be contraligned. In Exp I (8 Ss), Ss were required to draw a picture of the path they had walked through; in Exp II (14 Ss), Ss were required to locate targets in the path under conditions in which their presumed CMs were either aligned or contraligned with the path. Results show that, in Exp I, all Ss drew the 1st line segment of the path upward, suggesting that this part of the path was fixed in an upward direction in memory. In Exp II, Ss were more accurate and faster in locating points on the path when the CM was hypothesized to be aligned with the path than when it was hypothesized to be contraligned. (shrink)
Reverse Inference ( RI ) is an imaging-based type of inference from brain states to mental states, which has become highly widespread in neuroscience, most especially in neuroeconomics. Recent critical studies of RI may be taken to show that, if cautiously used, RI can help achieve research goals that may be difficult to achieve by way of behavior-based procedures alone. But can RI exceed the limits of these procedures and achieve research goals that are impossible for them to achieve alone? (...) By way of answering this question we show that a conception of the mind—type identity—under which the answer is in the positive, is untenable for reasons that strongly support another conception of the mind—functionalism—under which the answer must be in the negative. On this basis we then conclude that RI cannot exceed the limits of behavior-based procedures in cognitive psychology. (shrink)
The advent of democracy in nineteenth-century Europe was resisted by a set of thinkers who shared an 'aristocratic vision'. These aristocratic thinkers rejected the view that the greater good of the majority was of greater value than some higher good of a smaller number. It was the noble minority that was the more valuable part of society. This view corresponds in part to the philosophical tradition known as perfectionism. Matthew Arnold and Friedrich Nietzsche, thinkers rarely considered together, represent significant exemplars (...) of the liberal and radical versions of the aristocratic vision, and their similarities and differences are representative of the broad spectrum of aristocratic thought. Their common rejection of philistinism was part of an aristocratic vision of cultural perfection which was, Alexis de Tocqueville suggested, the natural reaction of a minority against the overwhelming materialism of democratic society. (shrink)
The “problem” of dreaming in NREM sleep continues to challenge models that propose a causal relationship between REM mechanisms and the psychological features of dreaming. I suggest that, ultimately, efforts to identify correspondences among multiple levels of analysis will be more productive for dream theory than attempts to reduce dreaming to any one level of analysis. [Hobson et al. ; Nielsen].
In the twentieth century one interpretative perspective is curiously and strikingly absent: spatiality of narrative. Philosophical thought saw fundamental ontology as founded on temporality with space as decoration. Johannine inquiry has tended to follow in philosophy's temporal footsteps. However, it is plausible to assume that New Testament writers were spatially oriented while modern interpreters have been ensconced in temporal consciousness. Furthermore, as anthropology has long recognized, conceptions of space and place are central to any culture's sense of self. The undue (...) hermeneutic privileging of linearity and causality may have forced biblical texts into a temporal mode of reading that their original authors may not have intended.In understanding biblical worlds it is necessary to again explore spatiality. This essay will introduce textured spatiality as it applies to John 9. It will briefly review temporal thought and consciousness and explain how visual imagery is an essential component to the transmission and preservation of tradition. Textuality will also be used to tell the tale of the man born blind. Using the nature of Shabbat as a pivot, and a narrative juxtaposition of two contrasting Sabbath spaces, the paper will point to a possible Urcarnivalesque element in the chapter. (shrink)
Numerous experiments have examined whether moving stimuli capture spatial attention but none have sought to determine whether visual features of looming and receding objects are extracted in a capacity-free manner. The current experiment used the task-choice procedure originated by Besner and Care to examine this possibility. Stimuli were presented in 3D space by manipulating retinal disparity. Results indicate that features of an object are extracted in a capacity-free manner for both looming and receding objects for participants who consciously perceive motion (...) but not for participants who do not consciously perceive motion. These results suggest that the cognitive system is biased to process potentially animate objects, perhaps because of the evolutionary advantage this cognitive ability may provide. (shrink)