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Icelanders dream differently

Icelandic National Broadcasting Service, RÚV, reports on the research of a Dutch anthropologist, Adrienne Heijnen.

In Iceland dreams are thought to contain messages and predict the future, but in central-Europe, they are thought to reflect the psychological condition of people.

Heijnen conducted her doctoral research on Icelandic dreams at the University of Aarhus in Denmark. She interviewed 150 Icelanders about their dreams, aged three to ninety and living in Reykjavík and in the rural south.

Heijnen presented her results at a lecture in Árnastofnun (The Árni Magnússon Institute). Dreams are interpreted differently in Iceland than in central-Europe, she said. In their dreams, Icelanders are frequently visited by the deceased, she said, and the dreams have a “social context”. In central-Europe, they are thought to reflect the psychological condition of the people who experience them.

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