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The Hill We Climb
Dream-Singers: the African-American Way with Dreams
The African American Way With Dreams309
Dreams and their meaning in African American life A belief in the power of dreams runs through African American life like a mystical thread, predicting the future, offering a glimpse of lost loved ones, informing decisions, and inspiring literature. Anthony Shafton distills a long time fascination with dreams into a seminal study of their place in black culture. More than 100 African Americans, both famous - such as literary lions John Edgar Wideman and Gloria Naylor - and ordinary men, women, and children, share their personal dream life and discuss its significance. Illuminating a wonderful variety of dreams, this book offers every reader insight into a centuries--old spiritual tradition. Anthony Shafton (Chicago, IL), a writer and independent scholar, has been researching and writing on the subject of dreams since the early 1980s. Shafton has an undergraduate degree in philosophy from Harvard and a master's in creative writing from Stanford. He is the author of several books, and occasionally writes for magazines. Shafton began researching African American dreams in 1990 and published on the subject in Dream Time, the magazine of the Association for the Study of Dreams.
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Advance Praise for Dream-Singers"e;You will find a great storehouse of folk and literary treasures in this ambitious book that speaks to anyone who has ever thought about his or her dreams. It's a wonderful adventure and I highly recommend it....
Dream Reader is a uniquely comprehensive survey of contemporary approaches to understanding and working with dreams. The general reader interested in exploring the world of dreams could not obtain a better introduction and grounding than from this...
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"...is the first to examine the role of dreams in any American subculture----and the one it considers is especially vital... What emerges is a fascinating look at instances of ancestor visitation, predictive dreaming, and the continuity of dreaming and dreamlike states." (Library Journal, 11/1/01)
ANTHONY SHAFTON is a writer and independent scholar who has been researching and writing on the subject of dreams since the early 1980s. He has an undergraduate degree in philosophy from Harvard and a master's in creative writing from Stanford. Shafton began researching African American dreams in 1990 and has published on the subject in Dream Time, the magazine of the Association for the Study of Dreams. He lives in Indiana.
Acknowledgments. PART ONE: A REVERENCE FOR DREAMS. 1. Through the Porthole of Dreams. PART TWO: THE AFRICAN CONNECTION. 2. Dream Is What We Do: Influences from Africa. PART THREE: THE FABRIC OF THE DREAM HERITAGE. 3. Grandmother Will Come: Ancestor Visitation Dreams. 4. That Bolt of Lightning: Predictive Dreams. 5. We Got the Signs: Signs in Dreams. 6. Blackonomics: Playing the Numbers from Dreams. 7. I Knew You Were Gonna Say That: Deja Vu and Predictive Dreams. 8. The Underbeat: Dreaming and Other States of Consciousness. 9. Didn't Bother Me None: Experiences at the Edge of Dreaming. 10. Take Me Through: Dreams and Dreamlike States in Religion. 11. All Life Passes Through Water: Dreams in Hoodoo. 12. Little Stirrups: Witches Riding You and Sleep Paralysis. PART FOUR: DREAMS ABOUT RACE. 13. The Same Old Nightmare: Race in Dreams. PART FIVE: DREAM SHARING AND THE FUTURE. 14. What My Mother Does: Dream Sharing and the Future. Appendix A: Index of Interviewees. Appendix B: Traditional African American Dream Signs. Appendix C: Technical Details about Policy and Numbers Gambling. Appendix D: Dream Books for Policy and Numbers Consulted for Chapter 6. Appendix E: Dream Book Authors and Publishers. Notes. References. Index.