Dreaming in Vienna: Analyzing dreams of Arthur Schnitzler and Sigmund Freud
The goal of the present study was to analyze the dreams of Arthur Schnitzler and explore the dream content for potential parallels or differences to what is known about his private life in order to test the continuity hypothesis of dreaming. In addition, Freud’s dream content was also analyzed in order to compare Freud’s and Schnitzler’s dreams. One hundred dream reports from Schnitzler and 34 dreams from Freud were coded using the Hall and Van de Castle rating system. Schnitzler reported more familiar characters, more friends and more family characters as well as a lower male percent compared to the male norms. In addition, Schnitzler showed less aggression in his dreams and an equal amount of friendly interaction with male and female dream characters. Compared to Freud, Schnitzler showed more familiar characters and a lower bodily misfortunes percent in his dreams. These differences can in part be explained by the continuity hypothesis. Future research could analyze dream diaries of other writers from different time periods or persons with different occupations.