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Modern Man in Search of a Soul Paperback – August 4, 1955

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Editorial Reviews


'He was more than a psychological or scientific phenomenon; he was to my mind one of the greatest religious phenomena the world has ever experienced.' - Laurens van der Post 'His psychological approach is deeply interesting and should stimulate many who are today more ready to trust a doctor than a clergyman, to help them to rediscover the meaning of life.' - The Guardian 'Jung was the first to see that, of all the crises facing humanity, the lack of any sense of meaning in life is the crisis that guarantees all the rest. Whether the reader self-defines as modern, late modern of post-modern, the predicament that Jung lays out in bleak detail still strikes a chord. His suggestion that any possible solutions - political ecological, philosophical or religious - must include and respect elements of what lies deep within the psyche ('the soul') continues to challenge and to inspire.' - Andrew Samuels, Professor of Analytical Psychology, University of Essex 'This slim volume contains the quintessence of Jung's thinking. Originally published in 1933, it was the first readily accessible presentation in English of the great psychologist's basic ideas about psychotherapy, dream interpretation, psychological types, the stages of life and his differences with Sigmund Freud. His observations on the relationship between the "archaic man" and "modern man" anticipate those of contemporary evolutionary psychiatry, while his diagnosis of what alls western culture has been endorsed by subsequent history. An invaluable book for those seeking an introduction to Jungian psychology, expressed - with unusual clarity - in the master's own words.' - Anthony Stevens --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 244 pages
  • Publisher: Harcourt Harvest; Fifth or Later Edition edition (August 4, 1955)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0156612062
  • ISBN-13: 978-0156612067
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.7 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #34,912 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Carl Gustav Jung (1875-1961) was a Swiss psychiatrist, an influential thinker and the founder of analytical psychology (also known as Jungian psychology). Jung's radical approach to psychology has been influential in the field of depth psychology and in counter-cultural movements across the globe. Jung is considered as the first modern psychologist to state that the human psyche is "by nature religious" and to explore it in depth. His many major works include "Analytic Psychology: Its Theory and Practice," "Man and His Symbols," "Memories, Dreams, Reflections," "The Collected Works of Carl G. Jung," and "The Red Book."

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

173 of 175 people found the following review helpful By Edwardson Tan on October 17, 2003
Format: Paperback
The eleven chapters in this work are lectures (except for one) delivered by Jung prior to 1933 (date of publication of this book). For those of you who already own some or most of Jung's Collected Works (CW), it may be unnecessary to purchase this title. I found this out too late since in my haste I failed to check the table of contents graciously provided for by Amazon on this web page. So for the benefit of those who are intending to buy this title I have listed below all the chapters and the corresponding volume of the CW where these same essays can be found (note: translations in this work and those in the CW may differ slightly as exemplified by the change in the title of the first chapter).
Table of Contents
1. Dream Analysis in Its Practical Application
["The Practical Use of Dream Analysis", in CW 16]
2. Problems of Modern Psychotherapy
[in CW 16]
3. The Aims of Psychotherapy
[in CW 16]
4. A Psychological Theory of Types
[in CW 6 (one of the four essays in the appendix)]
5. The Stages of Life
[in CW 8]
6. Freud and Jung--Contrasts
[in CW 4]
7. Archaic Man
[in CW 10]
8. Psychology and Literature
[in CW 15]
9. The Basic Postulates of Analytical Psychology
[in CW 8]
10. The Spiritual Problem of Modern Man
[in CW 10]
11. Psychotherapists or the Clergy
[in CW 11]
Notwithstanding the fact that all chapters can be found in the CW, this anthology of Jung's essays is a rich and filling smorgasbord of his thoughts, ideas, theories, and opinions about the psyche around the time he was 50. Although I am disappointed that I purchased a title I practically don't need (having a good number of the CW already) I can hardly give this anthology less than five stars.
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86 of 89 people found the following review helpful By R. Schwartz on October 18, 2004
Format: Paperback
A very insightful and meaningful book, 11 intriguing essays in 244 pages. Jung is a deeper thinker, and I think not reductive like Freud and Adler tended to be. He makes no claim to dogmatism or absolutes. Jung really hits on the psyche and transcends the borders of rational intelligence into areas of the unconscious expressions in symbolism and images.

I am going to argue against another reviewer here that gave this book 4 stars as being outdated. When I look at the present collective societal structure and current cultural pattern apart from the minority of advanced individuals, I can see the postmodern man has regressed far from the modern man of the 1930's in search of a soul. Of course there as been advances individually, but on a collective level; fundamentalism, religious literalism, nationalism, patriotism and one-sided thinking This has grown in major proportions as opposed to the other way around and it is far more serious than most even realize and patterns after historical events of very similiar nature.

The first essay on dream-analysis hits on the idea that dreams are very hard to interpret and suggests that understanding the circumstances and conditions of the conscious life is significant in relation to the dreams of the unconscious life.

On the problems of psychotherapy, Jung relates four stages of analytical psychology, the confessional, explanation, education and transformation

"The great decisions of human life have as a rule far more to do with the instincts and other mysterious unconscious factors than with conscious will and well-meaning reasonableness. The shoe that fits one person pinches another; there is no recipe for living that suits all cases.
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112 of 121 people found the following review helpful By D. Roberts VINE VOICE on November 10, 2000
Format: Paperback
I have always been deeply suspicious of the field of psychology. While I may not go so far as Richard Feynman did when he referred to them as the "modern day counterparts to witchdoctors," the discipline does make me rather nervous (if pushed to extremes).
That said, I have always respected Jung as an intellectually honest scientist. I may not agree with all his views, but I appreciate that fact that he is not the usual run-of-the-mill sterotyping pigeon-holer (as most psychologists are). His concept of the collective unconscious (whether it is correct or not) is rather fascinating. I do believe there is something to it, as these common archetypal images incessantly end up in our dreams and mythologies. It is not by chance that Joseph Campbell was so influenced by Jung's ideas as to incorporate many of them into his exegesis of mythology.
The present book is my all-time favorite book that is written in the psychology field. The book covers a diverse set of topics which Jung engages with his remarkable acumen. Some of the issues raised are the problems with psychotherapy, the contrasts between his views and those of Freud's (which led to their falling out), psychology and literature, and the spiritual problems of modern man.
One of the most interesting chapters of the book is entitled "Archaic Man." Jung details the psyche of tribes in such places as sub-Saharan Africa and New Guinea. Many of these cultures live the same way today that their ancestors lived thousands of years ago. Their psychological state, like their way of life, has been frozen in time. In essence, they are much the same as primitive man; the same as our own forefathers. Jung dicusses how they tend to explain everything via supernatural happenings.
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