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The Red Book (Philemon) [Box set] [Hardcover]

C. G. Jung , Sonu Shamdasani , Mark Kyburz , John Peck
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (144 customer reviews)

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Book Description

October 19, 2009 0393065677 978-0393065671 1st
The most influential unpublished work in the history of psychology. When Carl Jung embarked on an extended self-exploration he called his “confrontation with the unconscious,” the heart of it was The Red Book, a large, illuminated volume he created between 1914 and 1930. Here he developed his principle theories—of the archetypes, the collective unconscious, and the process of individuation—that transformed psychotherapy from a practice concerned with treatment of the sick into a means for higher development of the personality.

While Jung considered The Red Book to be his most important work, only a handful of people have ever seen it. Now, in a complete facsimile and translation, it is available to scholars and the general public. It is an astonishing example of calligraphy and art on a par with The Book of Kells and the illuminated manuscripts of William Blake. This publication of The Red Book is a watershed that will cast new light on the making of modern psychology.
212 color illustrations.

Frequently Bought Together

The Red Book (Philemon) + Reading The Red Book: An Interpretive Guide to C.G. Jung's Liber Novus + The Red Book: A Reader's Edition (Philemon)
Price for all three: $196.49

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Editorial Reviews


“This is a volume that will be treasured by the confirmed Jungian or by admirers of beautifully made books or by those with a taste for philosophical allegory.” (Michael Dirda - Washington Post)

About the Author

Sonu Shamdasani, a preeminent Jung historian, is Reader in Jung History at Wellcome Trust Centre for the History of Medicine at University College London. He lives in London, England.

Product Details

  • Series: Philemon (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 404 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; 1st edition (October 19, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393065677
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393065671
  • Product Dimensions: 18 x 12.3 x 2.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (144 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,801 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."

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
711 of 727 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Extraordinary November 2, 2009
By B. Hill
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
In 1913, a 40 year old world renowned psychologist suffers recurring dreams and visions of world catastrophe. His expertise as a psychiatrist working with incurable psychotics forces him to conclude that he is on a course to madness. His training as a scientist compels him to meticulously document what he imagines will be his unavoidable decline into insanity. With the outbreak of World War I, he experiences relief in the realization that the images that have haunted him over the prior ten months pictured not his own undoing, but that of the world. As the outer conflict unfolds, he continues to record the process unfolding within his own psyche, which is reflective of the events in the larger collective. He continues the process until near the War's end, and then spends more than a decade devotedly elaborating, amplifying and illustrating the material that burst upon him during that time in order to render it comprehensible.

The Red Book is not "personal" as we use that word now. It is "personal" in the sense that it details one individual's very unique experience of coming into relationship with what Jung termed the Self, and in prior times was referred to as God, but it is at the same time very impersonal, and actually universal, in cataloguing the drama inherent in any person's formation of that relationship. The book is at home with The Odyssey, The Divine Comedy, Goethe's Faust, and, as much as anything, The Red Book is Jung's response to Thus Spoke Zarathustra and to Nietzsche's proposition that for modern man, God is dead. The response is that God is neither dead nor to be found in outer religious, national or political containers, but is to be discovered and struggled with in the living of each individual life.
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316 of 336 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly incredible! October 15, 2009
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I HAVE the Red Book and am in the process of reading it. It is beyond description! This truly unique book represents the personal journal one courageous man took into the dangerous realm of the unconscious in search of an understanding of himself and the structure of the human personality in general. In the process, Jung regained his soul which was lost in the contemporary malaise of spiritual alienation. Liber Novus, as the book is called, represents a prototype of the individuation process, which is seen as the universal form of individual development. Jung was a psychiatrist who worked with schizophrenics. He intuited that their fantasies held meaning important for their healing and saw that some of the fantasies corresponded to mythological motifs. This curiosity lead Jung to his own decision to drop beneath consciousness to explore the realm of these fantasies, the realm of the "dead". He did this without chemicals or inducers but through a process he called active imagination. An inner world opened up to him to explore, which he documented in his writings and paintings. The book itself is like a medieval manuscript created with great care. He worked on the book for 16 years, giving it to others to read and edit with the intention of it one day being published. Liber Novus is a book of wisdom and deserves to be studied. It invites the reader into the world of imagination--like the dream world. I have studied my dreams for years and the language is similar. It shows what we have to learn when we slow down and listen to the inner voices. I thank Jung for giving me a guide to the soul, or human personality--which ever language one prefers.
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178 of 194 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Believe the Hype October 21, 2009
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book is glorious. I hardly need to comment on the content, as Jung's magnum opus is clearly of mythical proportions. And reality certainly matches the myth. Aside from the content, the presentation is outstanding. High quality color copies of his journal entries are provided in original form throughout the first half of the book, and translations and editor commentary are provided in the second half. The binding, printing and color quality are all museum grade, and I consider this an investment-quality purchase. This is by far one of the most important pieces of psychological thought, and offers a rare glimpse into a brilliant man's thinking on a highly abstruse concept.
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72 of 77 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing - But why is shipping delayed, you ask? November 27, 2009
During over two decades reading Jung, this is the book I dreamed of some day seeing. Yes, it is incredible.

But instead of adding to the many praises of the Red Book, let me comment on the editorial work that accompanies Jung's text.

Sonu Shamdasani's Introduction is undoubtedly the best available biography of Jung, though focused in context on the critical central years of Jung's life. Shamdasani is a remarkable scholar, and he has spent over 13 years with the primary documents -- material never before made available to a scholar, documents including Jung's seven Black Book journals, the various draft manuscripts of the Red Book, Jung's own dream books and letters from the period, the amazing contemporary diary of Cary F. Baynes, and innumerable other previously unpublished (and largely unknown) primary sources. After Shamdasani's work, all previous biographical evaluations of this period are irrelevant. No researcher previously had access to the basic and extensive source material upon which a biography must be founded, and thus much of what was written in past decades was either pure speculation or blatant perfidy.

BUT, you ask, why is it not in stock for shipment??

Because the publisher, Norton, was uncertain if this huge and expensive book would sell. The first printing was for only 5,000 copies! To the publisher's surprise, these sold out in pre-publication orders two months before the official release date of Oct 7, 2009. This is not an easy book to print, or reprint. Printing is done in Italy on over-sized museum quality papers, with superb binding. Unlike the average hard-cover book, ordering up another ten thousand copies of a book like this is not a simple matter.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars This ones a keeper.
My thanks to the family for allowing this book to be published. I have it that the translation of the dreams into English is excellent. Read more
Published 13 days ago by Nancy I. Campbell
3.0 out of 5 stars Genius or madman...
In this his most intimate journey into his own unconscious Jung permits us to see a glimpse of the complex plots and meanderings of a mind that he himself sometimes thought was... Read more
Published 21 days ago by Lewis Tagliaferre
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely Worth the Wait!
The book didn't arrive for several weeks so I contacted the seller and she was extremely helpful. It turns out the USPS did not scan the book for tracking when it arrived at the... Read more
Published 28 days ago by DJacobs
5.0 out of 5 stars The Red Book
Familiarity with The Red Book and its contents are mandatory for anyone
who is seriously studying Jung. Read more
Published 1 month ago by NJ Snider
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful art and wonderful reading.
Gorgeous book. Mystical and entrancing. I recommend it for anyone interested in psychology or in spirituality. It is a magical experience. Worth every penny.
Published 1 month ago by Linda J. Mcdonell
4.0 out of 5 stars C. G. Jung is awesome
I love C. G. Jung, especially his work on archetypes. He was the forerunner to continued great works by Myers, Briggs, and David Keirsey. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Greg Day
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! Mine has already increased in value!
I knew this was a very important book to buy while it was still available as a first edition. But I had seen a few of the pages (posted as a teaser for the whole book. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Marisa R. Bennett
5.0 out of 5 stars For the serious minded
Impressive! Bought this for my husband. Had no idea what a stunningly beautiful book this is over and above its monumental importance in the field of psychology.
Published 4 months ago by Lucy
5.0 out of 5 stars my son is enthralled
and will probably read it cover to cover. i just gave it to him yesterday for his birthday and he loves it!
Published 4 months ago by anne
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book!
This bok is amazing and beautiful. The mandala reproductions are beautiful and inspiring, the whole book is very well put together.
Published 5 months ago by SaintRoch
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Topic From this Discussion
managing The Red Book
I sit at a desk when reading the book, i use smaller hardbacks to support the lefthand side of the book when open, I switch it to the right, when reading the other half of the book, so I dont "break" the back of it.
Dec 25, 2009 by Lars |  See all 11 posts
The Red Book is possibly...
Almost missed the Matrix reference, haha.
Mar 6, 2011 by Thomas P. Burwell |  See all 2 posts
Pre-order sold out?
I pre-ordered this on 9/20 and looked forward to receiving it in October as the page then said it would be out--perhaps even in time for my birthday--only to come here today to find that some other people have received and reviewed it already (BEFORE the October release date?--what's up with... Read More
Sep 26, 2009 by tehuti_88 |  See all 77 posts
Yes, the product description of the book at Amazon says it is a complete facsimile and translation.
Sep 20, 2009 by CeeCee |  See all 8 posts
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