C. G. Jung and the Dead : Visions, Active Imagination and the Unconscious Terrain book cover
1st Edition

C. G. Jung and the Dead
Visions, Active Imagination and the Unconscious Terrain

ISBN 9780815366140
Published July 17, 2019 by Routledge
200 Pages

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Book Description

C. G. Jung and the Dead: Visions, Active Imagination and the Unconscious Terrain offers an in-depth look at Jung’s encounters with the dead, moving beyond a symbolic understanding to consider these figures a literal presence in the psyche. Stephani L. Stephens explores Jung’s personal experiences, demonstrating his skill at visioning in all its forms as well as detailing the nature of the dead.

This unique study is the first to follow the narrative thread of the dead from Memories, Dreams, Reflections into The Red Book, assessing Jung’s thoughts on their presence, his obligations to them, and their role in his psychological model. It offers the opportunity to examine this previously neglected theme unfolding during Jung’s period of intense confrontation with the unconscious, and to understand active imagination as Jung’s principle method of managing that unconscious content. As well as detailed analysis of Jung’s own work, the book includes a timeline of key events and case material.

C. G. Jung and the Dead will offer academics and students of Jungian and post-Jungian studies, the history of psychology, Western esoteric history and gnostic and visionary traditions a new perspective on Jung’s work. It will also be of great interest to Jungian analysts and psychotherapists, analytical psychologists and practitioners of other psychological disciplines interested in Jungian ideas.

Table of Contents

Part One 1. Introduction 2. The Literal vs. The Symbolic 3. Jung’s Way of Seeing 4. Jung’s Primary Orientation to the Dead 5. The Big Dream 6. Death Dreams Part Two: Liber Primus 7. The Red Book 8. Intorudction to Liber Primus 9. Jung’s First Active Imagination 10. Siefgried and the Merry Garden 11. Mysterium Encounter Part Three: Liber Secundus 12. The Red One, The Tramp and Death 13. Divine Folly 14. Philemon and the Poisoner Part Four: Scrutinies 15. Scrutinies 16. Sermons 17. The End of the Red Book 18. Post Red Book Implications 19. Contemporary Context 20. Concluding Thoughts

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Stephani Stephens holds a PhD from the University of Kent, Canterbury, UK, in Jungian Psychology. Between 2004 and 2013 she served on the Executive Committee of the International Association of Jungian Studies. She teaches psychology in the International Baccalaureate program and is a practicing counsellor in Canberra, Australia. She is the recipient of the 2018 Frances P. Bolton Fellowship.


'This bold and fascinating book not only provides the most thorough examination to date of Jung’s dreams and visions of the dead but also argues provocatively that at least some of these experiences, rather than just symbolising processes of the psyche, really were encounters with the dead. Beyond just presenting the evidence for this, Stephens demonstrates through her detailed analyses of specific dreams and visions, especially those contained in the Red Book, how Jung’s encounters with the dead helped to shape his psychological concepts and therapeutic techniques. Needless to say, Stephens’s argument also has far-reaching implications for understanding Jung’s epistemological and ontological views of the psyche.' - Professor Roderick Main, Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies, University of Essex, UK

'That the unconscious persists in developing spaces for the dead convinced Jung that what we owe them cannot be expiated by recognizing them as intergenerational complexes standing in for archetypes. Stephani Stephens details the visions that led Jung to identify more precisely what his own dead were demanding. How Jung paid this debt to psychological ancestors has never been so thoroughly accounted for. We see Jung going to hell to rescue their narratives and granting their concerns transcendent meaning when he takes up their projects as subjects of his own psychology.' - John Beebe, C. G. Jung Institute of San Francisco