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The Interpretation of Dreams

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3.82  ·  Rating details ·  65,801 ratings  ·  1,032 reviews
Widely considered to be his most important contribution to psychology, Freud said of this work, "Insight such as this falls to one's lot but once in a lifetime." The publication of this work inaugurated the theory of Freudian dream analysis. ...more
Hardcover, 496 pages
Published March 22nd 1994 by Modern Library (first published 1899)
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Linda He was a genius.
The first to discover levels of consciousness below our awareness - the preconscious and the unconscious (he did not use the term sub…more
He was a genius.
The first to discover levels of consciousness below our awareness - the preconscious and the unconscious (he did not use the term subconscious).
Modern critics challenge terms such as 'penis envy' but he was still a genius.(less)
Roland Cucicea I am currently reading it, I find it a little hard to read but it might be because the way Freud expresses ideas is too literate for me.. Took a break…moreI am currently reading it, I find it a little hard to read but it might be because the way Freud expresses ideas is too literate for me.. Took a break from reading, like 4 years and now I'm catching up, might not be a good book to pick if you can't handle the big words yet.(less)

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Justin Tate
Dec 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Whew! A daunting classic with plenty of awkward moments, but absolutely worth reading. Bucketlist material, for sure. Special thanks to Michael Page who narrated the unabridged audio version. His narration is absolutely pitch-perfect, the total embodiment of an analytical psychologist. Without the audio I probably wouldn't have read it, and that would be a shame.

What I love most is the endless analysis. Yes, some of Freud's theories are pretty wild--and I'll get to that--but there's a lot to lea
...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
Die Traumdeutung = The Interpretation of Dreams, Sigmund Freud

The Interpretation of Dreams is an 1899 book by the psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud, in which the author introduces his theory of the unconscious with respect to dream interpretation, and discusses what would later become the theory of the Oedipus complex.

Freud revised the book at least eight times and, in the third edition, added an extensive section which treated dream symbolism very literally, following the influence of Wilhelm Steke
...more
Alok Mishra
I have read various editions of various books claiming to interpret the dreams we see while we are unconscious or subconscious. However, the book by Freud is different. Being a psychologist and a famous one, his interpretations are mostly based on popular beliefs, culture and analysis. In the Indian context, much of it cannot be exemplified. Still, the book is fine and noteworthy even today.
Trevor
Mar 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology
This was a much more interesting book than I thought it might be. The nature of dreams is something that is hard not to find fascinating. The thing is that we spend quite a bit of time dreaming – not the third of our lives we spend sleeping, but enough time to make us wonder why we dream at all. It seems incomprehensible that our dreams would be completely meaningless. But then, they can be so bizarre it is hard to know just what they might mean.

Freud starts with a quick run through how dreams
...more
Warwick
Dec 20, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology
I dreamt that I had written a huge modern rewrite of Moby-Dick, except instead of a whale they were hunting a badger. It was full of gothic scenes of Ahab staring moodily into some light woodland, reminiscing about how the white beast had bitten his foot once, and how he would ultimately ‘earth the hated brock in his dank and stinking sett, and finish him utterly’. Instead of the Pequod, Ahab and the narrator cycled through the forest on a tandem bicycle, studying tracks and peering through the ...more
Glenn Russell
Jan 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I enjoyed reading Freud’s book. When he speaks about dreams and their interpretation, I am reminded of a microfiction I had published years ago where the editor told me it was the weirdest story he has ever read and that a Freudian psychoanalyst would have a field day interpreting. Here it is below. If anyone would care to offer an interpretation according to Freud or any other school of psychoanalysis, I'm sure you could have some fun.

The Roof Dancer

Sidney and Sam, identical twins, crackerjack
...more
Owlseyes
Jun 15, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Owlseyes by: Freudhimself



A major book (of 1900) as one of the possible approaches to the world of dreams. Freud starts with Aristotle (and the demoniac view); then, the (biblical) approach viewing dreams as "Divine inspiration".



Next, he proceeds with a very exhaustive sample of dreams of his own, of historical characters (Napoleon I, Xerxes....) or from his patients (or friends) to illustrate/prove his point: dreams are the fulfillment of (unconscious) desires. Though "absurd" they may look, they are mean
...more
Ivana Books Are Magic
The Interpretation of Dreams deals mostly with what the title would imply; it is an examination of the dream world according to Freud, one might say. Freud uses the subject of dreams as a base to build on, using dream analysis and interpretation as tools for his (at the time developing) psychoanalytical theory. It could be said that this is the book in which the author introduces his views and theory related to the unconscious mind. In this book, Freud often uses real-life anecdotes and events t ...more
Alexia
Jan 10, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Written with scientific denseness, but lacks scientific rigor or clarity. Can be tedious, vague and confusing. Freud will say he's going to do something (like not use personal examples) only to forget he said that and do it anyway. Or he'll acknowledge the flaw with his approach and then do nothing to correct it (which is better than not admitting it, I guess). For example, he uses his patients, "neurotics", for analysis and comments on how how that makes his conclusions not drawn from a represe ...more
Dimitri
Feb 16, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud is filled with Freud’s theories about the connections between dreams and real life that he has discovered through his research. Freud covers everything from the content within dreams to the strategies needed to interpret them, as well as diving in to the finer aspects such as memory in dreams and connections to everyday life. Freud often quotes the extensive research that has already been done in the field of the analysis of dreams but points out that al ...more
Sidharth Vardhan
Jul 16, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, 4-europe
If you are someone from East reading Freud or Jung for the first time, one of the things you will notice is how much culturally defined their assumptions are.

Freud also never stops to think that most of the dreams he is studying are from patients of neurosis. Freud's approach seems to be also limited by strong self-confirmatory bias in several other ways. Moreover, they are fail-proof because everything that might disprove them is super-ego suppressing it. All dreams are wish-fulfillment and if
...more
Amit Mishra
May 08, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Freud's treatment of unconsciousness and subconsciousness mind is really different and opens up a long way to explore something new in this field. His ideas provided a fresh new world to explore the opportunity. Before his writings, the unconsciousness mind was just an image that can not be explained by any scientific explanation. ...more
Adam
Feb 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: durcharbeiten
There is an asinine pastime of bloating one’s self-importance by “proving” that Freud was wrong about something. Such disputation regresses behind what it flatters itself as surpassing and rancorously promulgates nothing but its own failure to comprehend the subject matter. Don’t fall for it. All fetishistic factmongering aside, any page of Freud is sufficient to establish that he was and remains incomparably brilliant. The depth and range, scope and penetration are inimitable. His work is almos ...more
SmarterLilac
May 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the books that helped me understand Freud's genius, as well as the value of psychoanalysis. It hurts me so that fewer and fewer people want to understand or appreciate Freud. Yes, I realize that the Freudian perspective, especially on things like dream interpretation, has limited value in non-Western cultures, and that for some, dream interpretation itself may not be the most insightful way to understand the subconscious.

Still--come on. This book changed Europe, and the course of
...more
Jana
Jan 28, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology, theory
This was one of those books I tried to read on my own back as a young college student. It wasn't a part of any coursework, so I didn't have anyone to help tie it to larger ideas. If I remember, I think I ended up making my own wacky meaning out of it... which was some sort of Jungian collective UNCS thing or another.

But then I re-read it in grad school in the context of Freud's other work and it began to make a bit more sense. I liked his hypothetical "primal language" because it suggests the e
...more
Nicholas Spies
Dec 09, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Whatever you think of Sigmund Freud's theories, you have to admit that (at least in English translation) he is a very good and persuasive writer. That he was a very important influence on the history of the 20th century is an understatement, particularly since his nephew, Edward Bernays, is known as the Inventor of Advertising.

Bernays essentially created the consumer culture that has dominated the US and much of the Western world for the last 80 years or so. He did so by changing the basis by wh
...more
Schaza Askar
Sep 10, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Interpretation of Dreams stands as a unique and classic work in the history of psychology. Originally published in German under the title ''Die Traumdeutung'' in November of 1899,the book outlines Freud’s belief that dreams are highly symbolic, containing both overt meanings (manifest content) as well as underlying, unconscious thoughts (latent content). Dreams, he suggested, are our unconscious wishes, especially sexual ones, in disguise.

Freud's analysis of patients led him to the belief th
...more
Kolagani Paramahamsa
This one took me more time than any other book, notwithstanding the fact it is not one of the large books I have read; took me around 4 months reading only a couple of books in the meantime. Yet, this was one of those books where I wanted to read very slowly in the end, just to extend my time with the book.

Written in archaic language, complicated sentence formation with intense content in each and every one. This is more close to a scientific publication than a novel. Although I knew that psycho
...more
Shyam
May 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Imagine I have a picture-puzzle (a rebus) in front of me: a house with a boat on the roof, then a single letter, then a running figure with an apostrophe for a head, and so on. I could drop into a critical stance and say that such a combination and its components are nonsense. A boar does not belong on the roof of a house, and a person without a head cannot run; also, the person is bigger than the house, and if the whole thing is intended to represent landscape, the individual letters do not
...more
Maxwell
Where to begin with Interpreting Dreams? The first hundred pages scrutinizing contemporary scientific literature on dreams is kind of a slog. I don’t think you need to read this section unless you have a strong historical interest in late 19th century medical literature. The concluding paragraphs of each chapter in this part are worth a glance, though, as they thread into Freud’s later descriptive & conceptual appeals. The underlying logic of the text begins here and if nothing else, it demonstr ...more
Nikolaus Geromont
The Interpretation of Dream (in this case the eighth and last edition published in 1930), a theory on the possible meaning and construction of dreams written by Sigmund Freud early in 1899, is the first psychological/philosophical book I've read, and it is most definitely the most difficult book I've ever come across in my life... so difficult, in fact, that the author even states that he doesn't expect his readers to understand his theories, and admits to their utter complex nature (Chapter 7E) ...more
Tariq Fadel
Aug 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A landmark discovery in the history of mankind, this book is very important and influential. It is so profound that any and all explanations of it will be a gross oversimplification. The remarkable thing about Freud's books -either this one or civilization and it's discontent- is it is understandable by the general public and explained using common language and numerous simple analogies.
Using examples from his own dreams, Freud shows that dreams represent a suppressed wish fulfillment. And he go
...more
Jon Nakapalau
All my friends who were psychology majors told me to read this book. Did not understand everything, but I was happy to get this book off my list of influential books that influenced psychology.
Gregory Duke
Written more like a memoiristic novel than a scientific paper, pretty ridiculous at times, constantly self-editing, this book really does the most. It's very entertaining in its examinations, and it's wild to see how much our contemporary dialogue around dreams really does stem from this one book. It's also strange to actually see the origin of the Oedipal complex. It's way too long though, but my boredom is probably more a fault of my reading it significantly after the book's ideas have found t ...more
Michele
Skip the opening chapter on dream research and enjoy one of the most important and amazing books ever. This book messed me up. After I read it I realized how much being awake was like dreaming, and that in a sense I was walking around in a dream constructed by my unconscious.
Emma Getz
Sep 19, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
hey buddy not everything is about sex
Sundus
Aug 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"The dream possesses a marvellous poetry, a capacity for allegory, an incomparable sense of humour, a delicious irony. It beholds the world in an idealizing light unique to it and intensifies the effect of its manifestations often by the aptest understanding of their fundamental nature. It presents earthly beauty to us in truly heavenly splendour, the sublime in the height of majesty, our ordinary fears in the most frightful form, the ridiculous with ineffably graphic comedy. Sometimes we are ...more
Jack
I have a fascination with psychoanalysis that borders on tragic romance. As a disaffected teenager, I turned to Wikipedia for the answers to my feelings of alienation, social and existential (though I was never friendless and my anxiety on-being-alive was a space to comfortably brood more so than a pressing inquiry). I learnt about the DSM and Myers-Briggs tests. My passionate madness was revealed by the former, my misunderstood genius acknowledged by the latter. It's a terribly embarrassing thi ...more
Don
Apr 30, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Even if many of his theories have been surpassed or discredited by modern psychology, no one can diminish Freud's massive influence on Western culture and literature. Whether are not any of his theories are true or not is besides the point. With this in mind, I decided to read The Interpretation of Dreams in order to experience Freud's work directly. While there were many interesting elements in his work, overall I found it nearly impossible to read. I repeatedly lost the thread of Freud's argum ...more
Kyle van Oosterum
Aug 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You know, when reading Freud I find I'm slightly on edge. I'm always thinking that I should approach what he says with many a grain of salt, but this book is proof that he wasn't always wrong. The method of interpreting dreams that Freud advances is not at all concerned with looking at symbols behind dreams, but instead, it is concerned with making sense of the apparatuses of the soul. He believes that dreams are manifestations of the unconscious, which is entirely censored throughout the day vi ...more
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Dr. Sigismund Freud (later changed to Sigmund) was a neurologist and the founder of psychoanalysis, who created an entirely new approach to the understanding of the human personality. He is regarded as one of the most influential—and controversial—minds of the 20th century.

In 1873, Freud began to study medicine at the University of Vienna. After graduating, he worked at the Vienna General Hospital
...more

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54 likes · 9 comments
“The virtuous man contents himself with dreaming that which the wicked man does in actual life.” 254 likes
“Properly speaking, the unconscious is the real psychic; its inner nature is just as unknown to us as the reality of the external world, and it is just as imperfectly reported to us through the data of consciousness as is the external world through the indications of our sensory organs.” 122 likes
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