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Nocturnal Omissions: Steps Toward a Sociology of Dreams

Gary Alan Fine and Laura Fischer Leighton
Symbolic Interaction
Vol. 16, No. 2 (Summer 1993), pp. 95-104
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction
DOI: 10.1525/si.1993.16.2.95
Stable URL:
Page Count: 10
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Nocturnal Omissions: Steps Toward a Sociology of Dreams
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The examination of dreams should properly be a legitimate topic of sociological investigation. We argue that there are four basic principles of dream-life that suggest that dreams are external to the individual mind and are collective enterprises: 1) dreams are not willed by the individual self; 2) dreams reflect social reality; 3) dreams are public rhetoric; and 4) dreams are collectively interpretable. With the development of sociological approaches that examine topics previously defined as psychological, such as the sociology of emotion and cognition, the seemingly idiosyncratic components of these nocturnal productions should not exclude them from social analysis.

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