The Red Book, Part 1

A detail from a page in

A detail from a page in "The Red Book" by Carl Jung. The Solar Barge that transports the sun across the sky. Jung's representation of a solar myth from ancient Egypt.


Bound in red-leather, a hand-written and vividly illustrated manuscript by Carl Jung documents what he called his "confrontation with the unconscious," beginning around World War I. It was, he claimed, the source of all his later thinking in psychology. But the extent of his dreams, fantasies, arguments, and encounters were revealed only when the astonishing Red Book was published in 2009. Marilyn Powell scouts its dangerous contents.

Part 2 airs Wednesday, November 7.

red-book-cover.jpgIn 2009, a very unusual book was published. The extraordinary Red Book by Carl Gustav Jung. You know him as the great Swiss psychologist who explored the depths of what he called the "collective unconscious."

Jung said the Red book, begun in his thirties, was central to his thinking. Yet he never published it during his lifetime - he died at the age of 85 in 1961. The manuscript lay in a bank vault until his family were persuaded  to let this intensely autobiographical work see the light of day.

Through 1913-15, Jung entered the harrowing and pitiless inner world of his dreams and the fantasies he was able to induce. This was the time he called his "Confrontation with the Unconscious," and to which he returned again and again in the following years, reshaping and reworking his original experiences and generating concepts out of which Jungian psychology was born.

Jung's Red Book is completely hand-written and brilliantly illustrated. It looks like a manuscript out of the Middle Ages.

The Red Book Image Gallery

in the Programs:

Sonu Shamdasani
, Editor and Co-translator of the Red Book into English, General Editor of the Philemon Foundation, dedicated to publishing the unpublished works of C.G. Jung.

Hansueli Etter
, Jungian analyst and Founding Member of the Research and Training Centre for Depth Psychology in Zurich.

Angela Graf-Nold
, Psychologist and Historian of psychoanalysis.

Michael Robbins
, Psychoanalyst Andrew Samuels, Jungian analyst; Professor of Analytical Psychology, University of Essex.

Judith Harris, Jungian analyst and C-President of the Philemon Foundation.

Paul Bishop
, Historian of Jungian Psychology, German Dept., University of Glasgow.

Murray Stein
, Jungian analyst; Training and Supervising analyst, International School of Analytical Psychology, Zurich.

Andreas Jung
, grandson of C.G. Jung Carl Gustav Jung, archival recording, 1961.

The Red Book edited and co-translated with Mark Kyburz and John Peck by Sonu Samdashani, Philemon series, W.W. Norton & Co., 2009. The Primordial Mind in Health and Illness: a Cross-Cultural Perspective, Michael Robbins, Routledge, 2011.

The Primordial Mind in Health and Illness: a Cross-Cultural Perspective, Michael Robbins, Routledge, 2011.

The House of C.G. Jung: the History and Restoration of the Residence of Emma and Carl Gustav Jung-Rauschenbach, Andreas Jung, contributor, Stiftung C.G. Jung K├╝snacht, 2009.

Jung's Red Book: the Spirit of the Depths, Psychological Perspectives, Vol. 53, Issue 4, 2010 - entire issue devoted to discussion of the Red Book.

"Living with The Red Book," interview by Judith Harris with Sonu Samdashani,
Jung Journal: Culture & Psyche, Vol. 4, #1, C.G. Jung Institute of San Francisco, 2010, p.161-175.

"The Search for the Lost Soul," an interview with Murray Stein about the Red Book, Jung Journal: Culture and Psyche, Vol. 4, #4, C.G. Jung Institute of San Francisco, 2010, p.92-101.

"Liber Novus," that is, The New Bible: A First Analysis of C.G. Jung's Red Book, by Wolfgang Giegerich, Spring Journal: a Journal of Archetype and Culture, Vol. 83, Summer, New Orleans, Louisiana, p. 361-411.

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