Carl Jung

Today is Carl Jung‘s birthday (1875-1961).

Frye in conversation with David Cayley:

Cayley: How does your use of the term archetype relate to the way, say, Carl Jung uses it?

Frye: I used the term archetype because it was a traditional term in criticism, though not many people had run across it.  But I didn’t realize at the time that Jung had monopolized the term and that everyone would think I was a Jungian critic because I used it.  I’m dealing with a world that is intermediate between the subjective psychological world and the social world, the objective or natural world.  That is, I don’t think in terms of subject contemplating an object.  I think of a world of metaphor, where the subject and object have fused, the world of myth and metaphor.  The old-fashioned term for it was beauty.  It’s the world where emotion is relevant, where the categories of beauty and ugliness are relevant, where you don’t look for objective truth and you don’t look for subjective turmoil.  What I don’t want to do is to reduce criticism to something subjective and psychological.  Jung’s archetypes are powerful within the soul, and they have very intimate and very fascinating analogies to some of the conventional characters of literature, but Jung’s treatment of literature, I think, is barbaric, and most of the Jungians don’t seem to be much better.  (77)

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