Dreams pp 333-360 | Cite as

Consciousness in Dreaming

A Metacognitive Approach
  • Tracey L. Kahan


Over a century ago, William James wrote: “The universal conscious fact is not ‘feelings exist’ and ‘thoughts exist’ but ‘I think’ and ‘I feel’” (James 1890: 226). In other words, central to consciousness is the self-as-observer, what James called ‘the knower.’ As Baars explains, “the self is that which has access to consciousness” (1997: 153). (Also see Dennett, 1978.) The notion of self-as-observer implies dual levels of awareness: The contents of experience (participant perspective) are the object of awareness (observer perspective).


NREM Sleep Behavior Regulation Metacognitive Skill Internal Commentary Narrative Report 
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© Kelly Bulkeley 2001

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  • Tracey L. Kahan

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