The Ecocritical Psyche: Literature, Evolutionary Complexity and Jung, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Ecocritical Psyche

Literature, Evolutionary Complexity and Jung, 1st Edition

By Susan Rowland


208 pages

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pub: 2011-10-21
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The Ecocritical Psyche unites literary studies, ecocriticism, Jungian ideas, mythology and complexity evolution theory for the first time, developing the aesthetic aspect of psychology and science as deeply as it explores evolution in Shakespeare and Jane Austen.

In this book, Susan Rowland scrutinizes literature to understand how we came to treat 'nature' as separate from ourselves and encourages us to re-think what we call 'human.' By digging into symbolic, mythological and evolutionary fertility in texts such as The Secret Garden, The Tempest, Wuthering Heights and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, the book argues that literature is where the imagination, estranged from nature in modernity, is rooted in the non-human other.

The Ecocritical Psyche is unique in its interdisciplinary expansion of literature, psyche, science and myth. It develops Jungian aesthetics to show how Jung's symbols correlate with natural signifying, providing analytical psychology with a natural home in ecocritical literary theory. The book is therefore essential reading for seasoned analysts and those in training as well as academics involved in literary studies and Jungian psychology.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Problem of Writing and Nature for Jung and Evolution. The Problem of the Body In/Out of Nature for Jane Austen and Seamus Heaney. The Problem of Heaven and Hell for Emily Bronte. Re-figuring Evolution for Children's Literature. Hunting Signs with the Trickster Detectives. Shakespeare's Magical Power. The Writer and the Underworld.

About the Author

Susan Rowland was Professor of English and Jungian Studies at the University of Greenwich, London, and now is Core Faculty at Pacifica Graduate Institute, California, USA. She was First Chair of the International Association for Jungian Studies from 2004-2006. Susan's work takes Jung into literary theory and literature into myth; her publications include Jung as a Writer (Routledge, 2005) and Psyche and the Arts (Routledge, 2008).

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Movements / Psychoanalysis
PSYCHOLOGY / Movements / Jungian