Dreams are the king’s way to the unconscious. In Star Trek, dream and imagination have always been used as a fantastic element to open up new perspectives and narrative possibilities. Especially in Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Voyager, dream and imagination repeatedly play a central role. For example, Deanna Troi experiences lucid nightmares in “Night Terrors”, while the rest of the crew increasingly loses their mind when inhibiting the so-called REM sleep. The android Data also suffers from recurring nightmares in “Phantasms”, in which even psychoanalytical interpretations by a holographic representation of Sigmund Freud fail in their interpretation. Captain Picard experiences in “Inner Lights” a dreamlike condensation of a whole life. According to fans, this episode is one of the best in the entire series. In “Waking Moments”, the Voyager crew in the Delta Quadrant again encounters a species that lives primarily in a collectively shared dream.
In the lecture World of Dreams in Star Trek by Dr. Niklaus Denier and Dr. Tim Fischer at FedCon 31, the element of dream and imagination as narrative means will be analyzed and examined from a scientific perspective using selected Star Trek episodes. In addition to the dream, phenomena such as lucid dreaming and subjective time dilatation will also be explained from a neuroscientific perspective.