Parasomnia Dreaming: Exploring Other Forms of Sleep Consciousness


Series: Sleep – Physiology, Functions, Dreaming and Disorders
BISAC: HEA043000

Dreams are reported from all of stages of sleep. Yet almost all research and literature has focused on REM sleep. Much of what we know of dreaming outside REM sleep comes from the study of parasomnias, extreme events including strange and unusual behaviors, often inducing awakenings from sleep. These are not the “normal” dreams of REM sleep. These are the other dreams, parasomnia dreams, and they are quite special.

This book brings together leading dream scientists from throughout the world to address these dreams. It is among the first to focus on sleep mentation in the large portion of sleep that is not REM sleep. Many parasomnias are commonly experienced, and even when causing frequent disruption of sleep, they are only rarely reflective of underlying medical or psychiatric disease. The non-REM parasomnias include hypnogognic hallucinations, panic attacks, night terrors and dreaming associated with sleep walking and confusional arousals. The parasomnias of REM sleep include nightmares, sleep paralysis and the acting out of dreams in REM behavior disorder. Parasomnia dreams describe the phenomenological extremes of dream experience such as strange behaviors, thinking and thought very different from wake state, intense visual hallucinations, extreme emotions, a vivid and apparently real dream world, as well as confusion, autonomic discharge and strange automatic behaviors on awakening. These forms of consciousness are both phenomenologically and neurophysiologically very different from the waking consciousness.
(Imprint: Nova Medicine and Health)

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Chapter 1. Sleep-State Associated Parasomnia Dream Reports
(J. F. Pagel, MD, and Geoff Carre, PhD, Associate Clinical Professor, Department of Family Medicine, Southern Colorado Residency Program Pueblo, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora, Colorado, US, and others)

Chapter 2. Dreaming and Parasomnias in Narcolepsy
(Katja Valli, PhD, Juha Markkula, MD, PhD, and Salla Lamusuo, MD, PHD, University of Turku, Turku, Finland, and others)

Chapter 3. Dreaming in NREM Parasomnias: An Empirical Study
(Michael Schredl, Medical Faculty, Central Institute of Mental Health, Mannheim, Germany, and others)

Chapter 4. Sleep Paralysis
(Brigitte Holzinger, PhD, and Lucille Mayer, Sleep Coaching, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria, and others)

Chapter 5. Trauma and PTSD Nightmare Content
(Robert Hoss, Dream Science Foundation, International Association for the Study of Dreams)

Chapter 6. Dreaming in REM Sleep Behavior Disorder
(Isabelle Arnulf, MD, PhD, Sleep Disorder Unit, Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital, Sorbonne University, Paris, France)

Chapter 7. Dreamlike Experiences in Adult Somnambulism
(Antonio Zadra, Department of Psychology, Université de Montréal, Center for Advanced Studies in Sleep Medicine, Hôpital du Sacré-Cœur de Montréal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada)

Chapter 8. Cognition as a Feature of Consciousness in Sleep Stages: Theoretical Foundations and Research Results
(Miloslava Kozmová, PhD, Department of Psychology, University of Massachusetts, Boston, Massachusetts, US, and others)

Chapter 9. New Neuroimaging Technologies and Online Methods for Dream Content Analysis Make It Possible to Study Dreaming in Non-Disruptive and Low-Budget Ways in Sleep Medicine Clinics
(G. William Domhoff, PhD, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Psychology and Research Professor, Department of Psychology, University of California, Santa Cruz, California, US)

Chapter 10. Parasomnias in English Literature: Sleep and Dream Phenomena in Macbeth, a Christmas Carol, Alice in Wonderland, and Harry Potter
(Kelly Bulkeley, PhD, Director, Sleep and Dream Database)

Chapter 11. Using Parasomnias: The Creative Utilization of Frightening Dreams by Successful Artists
(J. F. Pagel, MD, Associate Clinical Professor, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora, Colorado, US, and others)



Parasomnia Dreaming is a fascinating and important book about the world of dreams emerging with abnormal sleep related behaviors and experiences – the parasomnias. Top experts contribute their research findings and valued clinical and neuroscience perspectives, along with perspectives from literature and the artistic creative process. The parasomnia dream reports will open many eyes and pique curiosity while setting the stage for this engrossing book.” – Carlos H. Schenck, M.D., Professor, University of Minnesota Medical School,  Author of Sleep: The Mysteries, The Problems and The Solutions

“The wide continuum of dreaming, visionary, and dissociative phenomena associated with the multiple states of sleep — so well reflected here in Pagel’s volume — offers an important corrective to any simple reduction of these dream-like states to ordinary fantasy and daydreaming. It is only this wider continuum that helps to explain the importance of such states as sources of creativity and insight throughout traditional cultures.” – Harry T. Hunt, Professor Emeritus in Psychology, Brock University, Author of The Multiplicity of Dreams


Anyone who knows what a parasomnia is; psychologists, physicians, dream scientists, neuroscientists, and philosophers of consciousness. But likes all books on dreaming, this book should have considerable interest in the general population. There is nothing else out there like it.


Parasomnia, Dream, Sleep, Consciousness, Nightmare

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