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Jung, Carl Gustav (1875–1961)

DOI: 10.4324/9780415249126-Q115-1
Version: v1,  Published online: 1998
Retrieved June 16, 2024, from

Article Summary

Jung was among the leaders in the development of depth psychology at the beginning of the twentieth century. An early follower of Sigmund Freud, he broke with the founder of psychoanalysis in 1913 and established his own school of analytical psychology.

Jung’s theoretical development originated in his work on the word association test and the theory of feeling toned complexes. As he continued to explore the workings of the unconscious, he postulated the existence of instinctual patterns of cognition and behaviour which he termed ‘archetypes’. Archetypal patterns are, according to Jung, common throughout the human species and constitute an inherited ‘collective unconscious’.

Jung’s approach to psychology was eclectic. He accepted the psychological importance of any phenomenon, even if it conflicted with current thinking in other fields. This attitude led to a deep investigation of the psychological significance of occult phenomena and alchemy, which Jung viewed as expressions of the unconscious that anticipated modern psychology. Later in life, Jung turned increasingly to considerations of the contemporary cultural expressions of psychological forces, writing extensively on what he viewed to be a deepening spiritual crisis in Western civilization.

Citing this article:
Hogenson, George B.. Jung, Carl Gustav (1875–1961), 1998, doi:10.4324/9780415249126-Q115-1. Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Taylor and Francis,
Copyright © 1998-2024 Routledge.

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