Best known for his landmark discovery of the brain mechanisms of dreaming, and for his interest in the integration of modern neuroscience with psychoanalytic theories and methods, Mark Solms is no dry academic.
Born in Lüderitz in 1961, Professor Solms matriculated at Pretoria Boys’ High School. From the mid-1980s he lived in England and from 1990 onwards he commuted monthly between London and New York.
Although he is currently professor in Neuropsychology at the University of Cape Town, an ‘A’ rated researcher, Hon. Lecturer in Neurosurgery at St. Bartholomew’s and the Royal London School of Medicine, and director of the Neuropsychoanalysis Center of the New York Psychoanalytic Institute, he wears his weighty academic reputation lightly.
Widely published in technical scientific journals as well as popular magazines such as Scientific American, Professor Solms has also published five books. His Clinical Studies in Neuro-Psychoanalysis won the Gradiva Award for Best Book, Science Category in 2001; his latest, The Brain and the Inner World is a best-seller, translated into thirteen languages. He is the authorised editor and translator of the forthcoming revised 24-volume Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud and the 4-volume edition (in both English and German) of Freud’s Complete Neuroscientific Works. He was named International Psychiatrist of the year 2000 by the American Psychiatric Association.
Outside academia, Professor Solms is pursuing a personal dream: on behalf of the Solms-Delta family estate, he is overseeing the rebirth of a Franschhoek farm, where wine has been produced over the past four centuries. Not surprisingly, Professor Solms’ approach to winemaking reflects his background. His choice of grape varieties and vineyard management methods are based on a comprehensive scientific appraisal of site-specific data on climate and terroir.
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