On dreams, imaginative knowing and not knowing: Appearance, identity, and shame


This paper explores the relation of concepts of the unconscious to notions of the imagination, and both to the dynamics of shame. In this discussion dreams occupy a central place, since they are so intimately related to human relationships and to the human imagination. What is seen, not seen, concealed, relied upon for others not to understand, and what is imagined in the responses of others and of oneself—these are essentially shame dynamics, since our identity is determined by relationships.

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Correspondence to Benjamin Kilborne.

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Benjamin Kilborne, Ph.D., is Training and Supervising Analyst, International Psychoanalytic Association; Member, American Psychoanalytic Association; Member, Groupe Lyonnais de Psychanalyse Rhône-Alps; Associate Editor, American Journal of Psychoanalysis.

Address correspondence to Benjamin Kilborne, Ph.D., 2 rue Victor Duruy, 71250 Cluny, France.

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Kilborne, B. On dreams, imaginative knowing and not knowing: Appearance, identity, and shame. Am J Psychoanal 79, 1–16 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1057/s11231-019-09176-4

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  • dreams
  • shame
  • the unconscious
  • imagination
  • imaginative knowing