It Takes a Village to Raise a Child

The Child arrives at This Pale Blue Dot 

Children are born into family, culture, language, and a historical marketplace of ideas, mythology, and ideology. There are 193 countries (give or take) on the planet, and more than 5,000 different languages. Each child born today must unconsciously learn a cultural milieu. Each has the daunting task of becoming. part of the story called civilization. Each child must begin to develop a philosophy of mind, renewing the conversation and story of Dream Vision begun in prehistoric times. As Jean Piaget's Play, Dreams and Imitation, has shown, the child is innately motivated by play to build a theory of the mind while constructing a language code. The proliferation of literary codes found in dreams implies conceptual production, circulation and exchange, an economy of cultural signs and continued poetic expansion and contraction of meanings. The text of the dream is a cultural conceptual semiotic space where the individual and collective ritual communication codes of thoughts, feelings and memories about life, death and survival attempts to circulate meaning. 

Shagra Zim, in Cognitive Development of Children's Dreams, reports on dreams' developmental aspects. Zim's research asks two principal questions: Is there a developmental adaptive trend in children's dreams? Does this trend follow Jean Piaget's genetic stage theory of cognitive development? Zim answers "Yes" to both questions. Children's reports of dreaming suggest that the child has a passive observer role. Only later does the child become an active performing artist whose characters, plots, and scenery in dreams become more complicated. The child's initial egocentric viewpoint evolves so that others begin to have a larger part in dream interactions. The child's role can grow, develop, change and mature from the egocentric to the sociocentric viewpoint with its multiple adult interactions.

We can find numerous You Tube videos that act much as a Psychodynamic Psychology 101 class, here are some of them;

The child's socialization (see video) is featured  and surrounds the chicken or egg debate of nature and nurture (view video).

  • Julia Kristeva(watch video) explored the poetic language acquisition of children as it relates to the child's sense of self.
  • Jean Piaget(see video) was a modern pioneer in attempting to understand child's cognitive developmental processes.
  • The Harlow Experimentshave made the importance of the effects of parental deprivation(view video) of nurturing visible.
  • The behavioural experiments of B.F Skinner(watch video) led to his theory of operant conditioning.
  • The attachmenttheory(view video) of John Bowlby(see video) provides a theory for the development of love(watch video)and identity(view video).
All material Copyright 2006 International Institute for Dream Research. All rights reserved.