Understanding dreams and the dreaming brain has proven to be one of the most complex and enduring problems in the history of science. In early 20th century a new paradigm for understanding dreams emerged, based on complex structural theories of the psyche, particularly of the unconscious mind. Such philosophical and anthropological theories are based on abstract models of higher-level cognitive and emotional functions of the brain, where symbols, metaphors and latent meanings of dreams play important roles. However, recent advances in neuroscience have been able to show us another aspect of dreaming brain: its functions. High-resolution imaging of brain activities and analyses of physiological processes of the brain have begun to usher in yet another revolution in understanding dreams. Such empirical studies suggest that dreaming serves a spectrum of biological functions, such as learning, memory consolidation and emotional regulation.
The program of the symposium will be divided into two segments. There will be one outside keynote speaker and invited talks by UCLA scholars and scientists.
To read the abstract, click on the title of each talk or breakout session.
Day 1: (i) Theories of Dreams and (ii) Dreams and Popular culture, the Future of Dreams
TUESDAY, APR. 16
|10.00-10.15||Douglas Hollan: Introduction and Welcome|
|10.15-11.00||George Bermudez: Towards an Intersubjective Science of Dreams|
Kelly Bulkeley: Remembering the Future of Dream Research
|13.30-14.20||Maria D'Orsogna: Cortisol and nightmares: the role of neuroendocrine stress response|
|14.20-15.10||Ekaterina Lapina-Kratasyuk: Digital Dreams: Bringing Psychoanalytic Stereotypes into Multiplatform Worlds|
|15.30-16.15||Vwani Roychowdhury: Multi-Level Dreamscape Reconstructions from Text Reports|
|16.15-16.45||Maja Gutman: Revisiting our dreams: Virtual Reality Worlds and Simulations|
Kelly BulkeleyResearcher, Senior Editor of the journal Dreaming
George BermudezTraining & Supervising Psychoanalyst, Institute of Contemporary Psychoanalysis Los Angeles
Ekaterina Lapina-KratasyukAssociate Professor, National Research University Higher School of Economics in Moscow, Russia
Maria R D’OrsognaProfessor, California State University, Northridge; Adjunct Professor, UCLA Biomathematics Department
Douglas W. HollanProfessor, UCLA Department of Anthropology
Vwani RoychowdhuryProfessor, UCLA Electrical and Computer Engineering Department
Maja GutmanResearcher, UCLA Electrical and Computer Engineering Department
Kelly Bulkeley, Ph.D., is a dream researcher with a background in the psychology of religion. He is director of the Sleep and Dream Database (SDDb), a Senior Editor of the APA journal Dreaming, and a former President of the International Association for the Study of Dreams. He earned a B.A. at Stanford University, an M.T.S. at Harvard Divinity School, and a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago Divinity School. He is author and editor of several books, including The Wilderness of Dreams (1994), An Introduction to the Psychology of Dreaming (1997), Dreaming Beyond Death (2006), American Dreamers (2008), Dreaming in the World’s Religions (2008), Lucid Dreaming (2014), Big Dreams: The Science of Dreaming and the Origins of Religion (2016), and Lucrecia the Dreamer: Prophecy, Cognitive Science, and the Spanish Inquisition (2018). He lives in Portland, Oregon.
George Bermudez, Ph.D., Psy.D., a Clinical-Community Psychologist and Certified Psychoanalyst. A member of the Institute of Contemporary Psychoanalysis-Los Angeles (ICP-LA), former Associate Professor at the California School of Professional Psychology, Los Angeles, specializing in Multicultural Clinical Psychology; Dr. Bermudez is currently Core Faculty & Director of the Child /Family Studies Specialization at Antioch University-Los Angeles (AULA). He is the Founding Director of the Doctoral Clinical Psychology Internship Training at Children’s Institute, Inc., where he developed an innovative bilingual-bicultural clinical psychology internship, applying and integrating the principles of community psychoanalysis with evidence-based practice and multiculturalism.
Dr. Bermudez has been striving to develop and train others in a multi-dimensional, integrative approach to psychological theory and practice that brings together developmental theory, depth psychology of the unconscious, family systems, group psychology, and multiculturalism. Dr. Bermudez is an active conference presenter, consultant, and trainer: he has presented at regional, state, national, and international professional conferences on a number of topics: Organizational Development for Multisystemic Therapy Services; Principles for Effective Interprofessional Collaboration; Effective Family Therapy with Latino Families; Eco-systemic Family Therapy, Trauma, and Attachment: An Integrative Approach to Treatment and Training; and most recently, healing collective racial trauma through “social dreaming” (published in the International Journal of Group Psychotherapy, June 2018). Dr. Bermudez is currently working on a book integrating the insights of a depth psychology (psychoanalysis) with whole systems change.
Dr. Ekaterina Lapina-Kratasyuk is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Communications, Media and Design at the National Research University Higher School of Economics in Moscow, Russia. She holds a Ph.D. in Cultural Studies from Russian State University for the Humanities, Moscow; an MA in Cultural Studies from the Institute for European Cultures (Russian State University for the Humanities and Ruhr-Universität Bochum). She is the co-editor of Tuning Language: Communication Management in Post-Soviet Space (2016); the co-editor of The Digital City: Urban life and Digitalization (2019), and the author of numerous papers on Russian television, cinema, and new media.
From 2014-2016 she was the head of the research group “Digital City”. After graduating from UCLA’s Institute for Pure and Applied Mathematics program Culture Analytics in 2016, E. Lapina-Kratasyuk directed a MediaSpace research project, done in collaboration with the Moscow Space Museum and dedicated to Space representations in media, including cinema, astrophotography, videogames and Big Data 3D installations and their aesthetic, educational, political and economic aspects. She is an organizer of the annual international conference MediaSpace and a public lecture course “Space and Sci-Fi” (March-May 2019).
Maria R D’Orsogna
Maria R D’Orsogna received her PhD in Theoretical Physics from UCLA in 2003. She is a professor of Mathematics at the California State University, Northridge and holds an adjunct professor position in the Biomathematics Department in the Medical School at UCLA. Currently, she is the Associate Director of the Institute for Pure and Applied Math at UCLA.
Her scientific interests cover a wide range of topics, primarily within biology and sociology using tools from statistical mechanics, game theory, numerical simulations, and stochastic processes. She has worked on mathematical models of virology, cell biology, neuroendocrine systems, multi-particle swarming, crime hotspot formation, sectarian violence, networks of organized crime. Collaborations with experimental or social scientists usually help inform the proper approaches to be used, to understand dynamics and mechanisms, identify optimal strategies and possibly formulate new and relevant questions.
Prof. D’Orsogna is the author of more than fifty referred publications; her work is supported by the NSF and by the Army Research Office.
Douglas W. Hollan
Douglas Hollan is a UCLA cultural and psychological anthropologist whose primary focus is on how social experience affects health (including mental and emotional health), emotions, empathy, embodiment, and different states of consciousness and non-consciousness (including sleeping and dreaming). Using person-centered interviews and observation, he is particularly interested in how emotional health and well-being are conceptualized in different times and places, and the extent to which these conceptualizations feed into the experience of health and well-being per se. He is past President of the Society for Psychological Anthropology and an instructor at the New Center for Psychoanalysis in Los Angeles.
Prof. Roychowdhury’s expertise lies in combining tools from a number of scientific disciplines, and solving fundamental, as well as practical problems in a diverse set of fields, including Machine Learning (ML), Culture Analytics, Complex Systems and Networks, Artificial Intelligence, Quantum Computing, and Complexity Theory and Combinatorial Algorithms. He has published more than 200 journal and conference papers, co-authored multiple books, including two on Artificial Neural Networks (one of them with a Foreword by Prof. Marvin Minsky, a pioneering AI researcher), and has more than 15 US patents to his credit. Of particular relevance for this symposium is his focus on data analysis, and the development of machine learning algorithms and frameworks for the modelling and mining of large-scale complex systems and unstructured data from multiple domains, including social. In 2016 Prof. Roychowdhury initiated a NSF funded cross-disciplinary 4-month program on Culture Analytics at the Institute of Pure and Applied Mathematics (IPAM).
Dr. Gutman’s background is in the Humanities, with emphasis on Cultural and Media studies, and most recently, Consciousness studies. She completed her PhD at AMEU-ISH, Ljubljana, Slovenia. Her current research is focused on theoretical aspects of embodied cognition and its behavioural expressions in cultural data. To be able to fully co-develop new tools and methodologies for observing and measuring immersion in multi-sensory environments (VR), Dr. Gutman has started combining philosophical and neuroscientific approaches, along with various aspects from cognitive science and recent advances in data analytics. For the past three years, she has been focusing on the science of dreams by summarizing theoretical knowledge on dreams and transitioning abstract philosophical models to computational frameworks. In October 2017 Dr. Gutman and Prof. Roychowdhury submitted an intellectual property (IP) declaration titled “Methods and System for Large-Scale Dream Data in Immersive Multisensory Environment: Acquisition, Analysis, Modeling and Interpretation & Applications” to the UCLA’s Office of Technology Development.