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Thomson, J. (1983). Goldenberg, N. (Ottawa). ‘A feminist critique of Jung’. Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, 2, no. 2, pp. 443-449 (1976).. J. Anal. Psychol., 28(3):272-273.

(1983). Journal of Analytical Psychology, 28(3):272-273

Goldenberg, N. (Ottawa). ‘A feminist critique of Jung’. Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, 2, no. 2, pp. 443-449 (1976).

Review by:
Jean Thomson

Edited by:
Andrew Samuels

This short but powerful critique is of the absolutist view of the concept of archetypes, particularly the effect that this has on our perception of the feminine in life.

The first part of the paper examines the way in which Jung, and Jungian theoreticians, such as Neumann, have thought of animus and anima, Logos and Eros. The author points out flaws. Firstly, the complementary nature of these archetypal duos implies a balance of each in each sex, whereas, according to her, it is generally thought that in men animus and logos are leavened by quantities of anima and eros, but that in women anima and eros are all and the woman should, so to speak, not bother her pretty little head with masculine drive or intellect. Thus, Jung's theory may explain the male tendency to lose eros in pursuit of logos via commerce and science. To reverse the theory to accommodate women, however, simply reinforces social tendencies to tie women to a hierarchically subordinate role. Goldenberg, herself a theologian and university teacher, points out that Jungian women writers, such as von Franz, follow this line while manifesting powerful intelligence and that the effect is to put Jung himself in a position he would have repudiated, that of guru-patriarch in an inevitable hierarchy of mind based on a hierarchy of archetypes.

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