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Friday, February 23, 2024

Ask Katehi: Do you think and dream in English or Greek?

Do you think and dream in English or Greek?

This is an interesting question because it is one of those things that I believe changed without me really noticing it. I think and dream in English and not in Greek, and I can’t say I remember exactly when this began to happen. It’s interesting how the brain works that way.

I remember when I first came to the United States and I was working on my master’s degree at UCLA, I began trying to translate from Greek to English very early. At first it took some effort, but then I found myself being able to do it without thinking about it. If I had to guess when this began, I would have to say the transition happened within a year or so after I got to UCLA. I don’t believe this is something that you wake up one day and realize has happened, but something that happens more gradually over time.

However, words are not something I usually remember from my dreams. I dream mostly about colors and shapes. When I wake up, it’s usually the colors that I remember, but when there are words in my dreams, they are always in English.

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