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The Dream as a Tale

Author(s): Nikolai Vukov
Subject(s): History, Anthropology, Philosophy, Social Sciences, Language and Literature Studies, Literary Texts, Cultural history, Psychology, Semiotics / Semiology, Customs / Folklore, Anthology, Theoretical Linguistics, Applied Linguistics, Studies of Literature, Philosophical Traditions, Sociology, History of ideas, Semantics, Pragmatics, Psycholinguistics, German Literature, Other Language Literature, Structuralism and Post-Structuralism, Cultural Anthropology / Ethnology, Culture and social structure , Psychoanalysis, Sociology of Culture, Philology, Theory of Literature
Published by: Институт за етнология и фолклористика с Етнографски музей при БАН
Keywords: dreams and dreaming; folktales; folktale plots; narration; Oriental traditions

Summary/Abstract: The article deals with the semantic and functional interrelations between folktales and dreams and with the role of dreaming as a component which defines the structure of the folktale plots. The author discusses the symptomatic lack of the dream motif in one of the key studies in the humanities of the twentieth century, Vladimir Propp’s “Morphology of the Folktale” (1928). The study emphasizes the special place that the motif of dreaming has in folktales and analyses the versatile development of the narrative through the situations of “a folktale in the dream” and “a dream in the folktale.” The focus of attention is on the folktales from “One Thousand and One Nights,” through which a range of narrative techniques and plots enter European culture, along with a plethora of themes and motifs related to dreams and dreaming. Based on the analysis, the author elicits two main models of assimilation of dreams/ sleep in folktales: the model of Sleeping Beauty and the model of Scheherazade, which represent respectively sleeping as a fact provoking no plot, and the dream as a tale. The conclusion offers an explanation of the absence of the dreaming motif from Propp’s folktale morphology and draws a parallel between the theory of the functions in folktale plots and the idea of the psyche’s protective mechanisms in psychoanalytical tradition.

  • Issue Year: XLVII/2021
  • Issue No: 2
  • Page Range: 164-182
  • Page Count: 19
  • Language: Bulgarian