Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 25 July 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Dreams are sometimes described as an intensified form of spontaneous waking thought. Lucid dreams may seem to be a counterexample, because metacognitive insight into the fact that one is now dreaming is often associated with the ability to deliberately control the ongoing dream. This chapter uses conceptual considerations and empirical research findings to argue that lucid dreaming is in fact a promising and rich target for the future investigation of spontaneous thought. In particular, the investigation of dream lucidity can shed light on the relationship between metacognitive insight and control, on the one hand, and the spontaneous, largely imagistic cognitive processes that underlie the formation of dream imagery, on the other hand. In some cases, even lucid insight itself can be described as the outcome of spontaneous processes, rather than as resulting from conscious and deliberate reasoning. This raises new questions about the relationship between metacognitive awareness and spontaneous thought.

Keywords: lucid dreams, insight, metacognition, control, consciousness, self-consciousness, spontaneous thought, REM sleep

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.