Section I, ANTH 785: Dreams and Dreaming

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Section I features work by three students from Dr. Robin Sheriff’s ANTH 785: Dreams and Dreaming course, exploring how dreams reflect and shape culture. Brian Downer writes a powerful analysis of three of his own dreams, disassembling seemingly random occurrences in his dreams into common cultural models that ultimately represent a disconnect between the expectations placed on younger generations in America and the reality that many of these expectations are unachievable for most. Kai Parlett delves into the connection between dreams and music composition, reviewing popular American and European artists such as Paul McCartney, Billy Joel, György Ligeti, and Lucy Davis, who utilize dreams as a freeing space to expand their creativity or tackle complex issues in contrast to the typical American-Western perspective that dreams are unimportant. To round out this section, Channon Evans considers the pragmatic and spiritual role of dreams in three diverse Indigenous cultures: the Yolmo people of Nepal, the Chipewyan of Northern Canada, and the Gaujiro of Venezuela and Columbia.

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