The Continuity Hypothesis

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A longstanding tradition exists, surveyed by Freud in the opening pages of his Interpretation of Dreams, holding that dream life is continuous with awake life. Contrary to Domhoff (2017), Freud partook of this tradition, and Calvin Hall, who was much influenced by Freud, articulated the idea in 1971 (with A. Bell) as “the continuity hypothesis.” A decade later, with Domhoff’s collaboration, “personal preoccupations and concerns” (and, sometimes, “interests”), extending over years, became the focus of the continuity hypothesis, which Domhoff seeks to make the exclusive defining feature of the hypothesis. It is urged here that wider aspects of continuity, including “latent contents” as well as “manifest contents,” short- and intermediate-term dream–wake congruences, and personality constancies, should not be peremptorily excluded from a widely unifying principle of psychology.

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