Amy Tan + Deirdre Barrett Creativity in the Dreaming Brain
Amy Tan's books and stories have included ideas, breakthroughs, and whole narratives unleashed during dreams. She believes that her creativity relates to a free-form combination of memory, emotion and sensory synesthesia leading to metaphors and narrative paths. Her dreams have a similar quality. Do dreams enhance creative leaps? Can one use dreaming to increase creativity in specific ways? She discusses the effect of dreams on creativity with Harvard clinical psychologist and dream researcher Deirdre Barrett.
Amy Tan is the author of The Joy Luck Club, The Kitchen God's Wife, The Hundred Secret Senses, The Bonesetter's Daughter, and Saving Fish from Drowning, all of which have been on the New York Times bestseller list. She has written a memoir, The Opposite of Fate, as well as two children's books The Moon Lady and Sagwa, The Chinese Siamese Cat, and numerous magazine articles. Her novel The Joy Luck Club was a finalist for the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the Los Angeles Times Fiction Prize. Tan also co-produced and co-wrote the screenplay for The Joy Luck Club, for which she received both a BAFTA and Writers Guild of America nomination for best screenplay adaptation.
Deirdre Barrett is a clinical psychologist whose research focuses on the relationship between dreaming, creativity, and objective problem solving. She teaches at Harvard Medical School's Behavioral Medicine Program and was the past president of both the International Association for the Study of Dreams and the Society for Psychological Hypnosis. Barrett has written four books: The Committee of Sleep, The Pregnant Man and Other Cases from a Hypnotherapist's Couch, Waistland, and Supernormal Stimuli. She is the editor of two additional titles, The New Science of Dreaming and Trauma and Dreams, and has published dozens of academic articles and chapters on health, hypnosis, and dreams. Barrett currently serves as Editor-in-Chief of DREAMING: The Journal of the Association for the Study of Dreams.