Episode 19: Dreams

Tuesday, January 17th, 2017

‘I never ask a man what his business is, for it never interests me. What I ask him about are his thoughts and dreams.’   (H. P. Lovecraft). Welcome to Histories of the Unexpected where you will discover the history of things you did not even know had a history; like the history of zebras, or the history of the pen.

For this episode let us join the hoarder of history, Professor James Daybell and history’s very own husbandman, Dr. Sam Willis, as they take the ‘royal road to the unconscious’ to determine the unexpected history of dreams. Our very own Morpheus and Ole-Luk-Oie will take you on an interpretive journey through the dreamscape, from Sigmund Freud and the Oedipus complex, to the diary of 17th century clergyman Ralph Josselin, vicar of Earls Colne, Essex, and from Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein to Henry Fuseli’s 1782 painting entitled ‘The Nightmare’.

Whether you’re someone dreaming you a butterfly or a butterfly dreaming that you’re someone, James and Sam will reveal the links to discover that this unexpected history is actually all about: interpretation and repression, cultural production and imagination, possession and guidance, and recovery and changing perceptions. And indigestion and meeting Jesus, and ape heads, apparently, although how your supposed to sleep with one of those under your pillow is anyone’s guess!

‘To all, to each, a fair good-night, and pleasing dreams, and slumbers light.’    (Walter Scott)


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