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Psyche & Imagination - Online Abstract

Plenary Presentations
Robert Segal
Jung and Levy-Bruhl
Apart from some brief fieldwork of his own, Jung relied on the work of Lucien LevyBruhl, the French philosopher and armchair anthropologist, for his understanding of primitive, or archaic, man. As he did with everything else he studied, so with the work of Levy-Bruhl, Jung psychologized it. The relationship of mystic oneness between primitives and the world became, for Jung, a relationship of oneness between consciousness and the unconsciousness. That oneness was simply projected onto the world. Where Levy-Bruhl attributes primitive thinking to primitive collective representationsa concept taken from Emile DurkheimJung attributes primitive thinking to the state of the primitive unconscious, from which consciousness is not yet differentiated. The experience of identity with the world is the consequence, not the cause, of the experience of identity with oneself. I raise two questions about Jungs use of Levy-Bruhl. First, does Jung capture the heart of primitive thinking for Levy-Bruhl? For Levy-Bruhl, primitive thinking is distinctive not merely because it makes everything one but, even more, because it simultaneously keeps everything distinct. Primitive thinking is not merely mystic but also pre-logical. Does Jung incorporate this contrary aspect of primitive thinking in his characterization of primitive consciousness? Second, can Jung accommodate the standard criticisms of Levy-Bruhl by other anthropologists? If Jungs depiction of primitive mentality depends on the reliability of Levy-Bruhl, what becomes of that depiction once Levy-Bruhls thesis has been shown to be untenable? Levy-Bruhl himself gradually modified his views during his lifetime, as shown especially in his posthumously published Notebooks. But fellow anthropologists almost unanimously rejected, and have continued to reject, Levy-Bruhls depiction altogether. No anthropologist has encountered a culture, however primitive, that evinces the kind of mentality that LevyBruhl postulated. Can Jung retain his own depiction of primitive consciousness in the light of the repudiation of the depiction by Levy-Bruhl? Robert Segal is Professor of Theories of Religion at the University of Lancaster. He teaches and writes on theories of myth and theories of religion. He is the author of The Poimandres as Myth, Joseph Campbell, and most recently Myth: A Very Short Introduction. He is the editor of The Gnostic Jung, Jung on Mythology, The Myth and Ritual Theory, Hero Myths, and the forthcoming Blackwell Companion to the Study of Religion.


Dear everyone, At the end of the conference last weekend, there was a discussion of

Jung's essay, 'Archaic Man', from Modern Man in Search of a Soul (1933). As I teach this Jung collection every year to undergraduates as part of an English Literature degree, I wanted to offer some thoughts on this particular essay. 'Archaic Man' came up in the conference because Robert Segal was arguing, very persuasively, that Jung was misreading reading Levi Brughl, who in term has been superseded by later anthropologists. I have no problem with any of this. But I do want to argue on the ground I have used elsewhere, that Jung is a trickster writer, and that to me, what is most significant in the essay is the way that he is not really pretending to do anthropology. No, Jung is not a failed anthropologist, the essay is not about 'archaic man', because of course he is not claiming insight into the prehistoric. Moreover, the essay is NOT about primitive mentality - that is the trick! Have a look at the opening paragraph in which he says that he says it is impossible to speak of 'civilized' man because we are part of that we wish to survey. On the other hand, the vantage point over 'primitive' man allows study. Archaic/primitive/civilized are apparently used here in a straightforward colonial manner. Yet the whole 30 pages of this essay is devoted to deconstructing this binary between 'civilized' and 'primitive'. Even more interesting is the way the deconstruction (Robert - substitute 'taking apart' for 'deconstruction' - it will help!), is oriented back onto the European. The subject of the essay 'Archaic Man' is modern so-called rationality. Jung uses the apparent differences to prise open a space for the modern observer to analyse his own culture. I have just gone through the essay again and have picked out 17 examples where the guise of focussing on 'primitives' is the means of making a point about the prejudices of modernity. I will give some examples: He quotes Levy-Bruhl on 'prelogical' and then says that primitives are not prelogical, they are just like westerners but with different presuppositions. 'the process of ethical judgement is the same', he says on apparent differences in approach to good and evil. It is not true that tribal peoples have smaller areas of consciousness they just learn to concentrate on different things. Where 'primitives' believe 'intention' rules the world, our 'sacred dogma' is causality. His belief is grounded in experience.

Westerners are given to projection, just as 'primitives' do. Materialism and causality are similar to some primitive ideas. Easter eggs are primitive practices in the west! These are some of the examples of how the argument goes. I think that Jung has little interest in becoming an anthropologist. He is more engaged with the psychological structure of the athropological research of his (colonial) time, for what is can tell us about modern consciousness, the aasumed 'identity' of modern man, rational knowledge and unconscious suppositions. He uses the continual comparison 'primitive/civilized' to excavate irration structures of knowledge in modernity and to undermine (deconstruct) the so-called rational bedrock. And he loves the stories about the crocodiles eating people! Who wouldn't? best wishes, Susan
July 15 Dear all, I have just read--hurriedly--Susan's most welcome comment on my take on Jung's essay "Archaic Man," which was the heart, though not quite the whole, of my assessment of Jung's use of anthropology for his psychological ends. The paper that I gave on JUNG AND LEVY-BRUHL was much condensed from the written form. (I hope that the full paper will appear in the Historical Section of HARVEST.) One point that I did not have time to make was exactly the one that Susan so aptly makes now: that Jung, in this essay, as in so much else of his work, is really writing about moderns, and in "Archaic Man" is therefore writing to identify at least as many similarities between "primitives" and moderns as differences. Here Jung is, yes, doing the opposite of Levy-Bruhl, who is mesmerized by the differences, though even he acknowledges the similarities and acknowledges that the only pure form of modern thinking is natural science. I do still think, as Susan does not challenge, that Jung misunderstands Levy-Bruhl, and does so even while congratulating Levy-Bruhl for deciphering the true nature of primitive thinking! Jung, who may be amazingly creative but who is not a thinking type, fails to differentiate at least four definitions of "prelogical"--a term that Jung accepts (in contrast to his rejection of L-B's term "mystical"):

(a) personal versus impersonal causality; (b) intention versus chance; (c) "mystic" identity among all things; (d) simultaneous distinction and identity among all things. Jung never even recognizes the last definition, which in fact is for L-B what is truly prelogical. So be it. More important, I still maintain that Jung not merely relies on Levy-Bruhl for his, Jung's, characterization of "primitives" but, far more important, requires that characterization for his psychology and not merely for his anthropology. For Jung takes for granted, as does Freud, the parallel between the development of the individual and the development of the human race--the parallel summed up in Haeckel's Law of Recapitulation. If Susan's reading of Jung is right, the parallel between individual and race is undone. For if primitives are as "advanced" psychologically as moderns, or if moderns are no less advanced psychologically than primitives, then there has been no development of the race but only of the individual, who surely for Jung does develop dramatically through the stages of life. Many places elsewhere, but also in "Archaic Man" itself, Jung argues for his egregiously politically incorrect view that we moderns are far more advanced psychologically than our primitive forebears. Yes, we still project, but for the most part only onto other persons and not also, as with primitives, onto the physical world. Yes, moderns must reconnect to the unconscious, but not regress to the primitive state of sheer unconsciousness. That is inflation. And that is why Jung is so critical of mysticism--better, of Eastern mysticism. If I may cite myself, in my introduction to THE GNOSTIC JUNG, I offer my view of Jung's history of the psyche, which for me starts with primitives and keeps going. I am too nonliterary to read Jung as a "trickster." I take him at his

word, by which, for me, he stands or falls. He may be a writer, but he is not writing fiction. And he can therefore be wrong. In any case may I say how much I value Susan's comments and how much I hope that others will respond as well. that advances knowledge. Robert Segal Folks. My two-bob's worth below is mainly with Robert, but I think that the Jung/trickster analogy has something to recommend it as a mode of understanding Jung's fascination with the primitive. It is a great problem if we say that Jung is a trickster in relation to Levy-Bruhl. After all, what do tricksters do? According to one story (a It is criticism, not praise,

Winnebago one), trickster's left arm has a vicious struggle with his right arm. He also gets his anus to watch over some fresh meat for him, and when the meat gets eaten by foxes, shoves a burning firestick into his anus by way of punishment - and is actually surprised to find that it hurts. Funnily enough, it's an anthropologist Mary Douglas (in Purity and Danger) who cites these story fragments, seeking to show that 'primitive universes' are not, as Levy-Bruhl would have it, 'pre-logical', but rather 'pre-Copernican' (animistic and/or mythological). Her account, in my view, is about as partial and self-serving as Levy-Bruhl's own. There is a very, very large industry which manufactures primitives. The essential characteristic of these primitives is that they are allegedly 'not us'. So, as Edward Said puts it in 'Orientalism', they are our 'underground' selves - our unconscious. The relationship between primitives and moderns is entirely one of closure; the primitive is simply there to define the modern, where we have already made up our mind about what moderns are all about (science, rationality, objectivity, etc.) The primitive can therefore only emerge as mystical, irrational, subjective - in short, as a shadow of ourselves. And being a shadow, we don't recognise it, but see it coming from somewhere else Africa maybe, Aboriginal Australia perhaps, or any people we suppose to be uncivilised or living 'close to nature'. This, of course, is not just a projection, but a pathological one; your actual Africans, Aborigines or whoever can't live up to the image. Or, if they choose to live up to it, they become just as inauthentic as those who darkened them in the first place. Fact is, there are no primitives, and there are no moderns - at least outside of mythology and the ritual of tourism. I'm not discounting mythology; I'm just saying that this particular form of mythology might with good reason be resisted. The myth of the primitive is simply the direct corollary to the myth of progress. We evolve, and even solve problems, as well as make them - but we don't make progress. Once we discount progress, we must discount primitivity as well. Jung resisted neither conception and his thought remained Utopian to the last, albeit in the romantic rather than modernist register. Nobody lives any more close to nature than anyone else, although some might live closer to their own nature than others. It's the ones who dwell more distantly from themselves who like to see promising primitives somewhere else. It's important that we demand that a writer makes sense. It's important that a writer strives for consistency and works with the objective world in mind - including the objectivity of the psyche. As we know, Jung struggled psychologically and I think that it is true that there is something of the trickster in the way in which he suffered. He cut

himself up badly and he was most certainly painfully burned. His delusions were those of fragmentation, which is what trickster embodies - or rather disembodies. That famous striving for wholeness in Jung is no doubt the result of his experience of fragmentation and is probably the result of some failure of care in very early infancy. But, in relation to wholeness, we should demand no more and no less from a text than we should from a mandala - balance, symmetry and synthesis (such are the demands of logic, as well as of any good story). But analytical psychology is not, in itself, 'art'; it's science - so other demands must also be met in relation to having a grasp on reality. The primitive, as we know that being through Jung and Levy-Bruhl, is not real; he is a figment of the imagination. And that's simply not good enough - 1) on scientific grounds, where the first rule of objectivity is not to detach oneself from the world, but to properly and reflexively recognise the manner in which one effects the world; and 2) on ethical grounds, where one recognises and avoids the effects of inauthentic practice. The trickster is useful for undoing, but the trickster is not a way to be. He is a way not to be. Cheers, John

Dear Robert, I agree that Jung is not writing fiction in the usual sense of the work. He is writing what he calls the science of psychology and producing the type of writing we call art or rhetoric. You are going to have to quote! I just do not find any part of 'Archaic Man' where jung presents moderns are more psychologically advanced, that he does not immediately or several pages later reverse or undermine. And as for the recapitulation idea, I think that along with a number of other apparently important ideas from other disciplines or thinkers (the sexual theory anyone?), recapitulation is dropped when it is rhetorically useful to do so. Robert, you and many other important scholars, are looking in Jung for a coherent structure of ideas and with that presupposition rightly criticise Jung for his mistakes, inconsistency, and misreading. You are looking for a scaffolding to prop up the clinical practice. I am finding a jellyfish. It is a living jellyfish because it is designed to animate the psychic tissue of the reader! Jung's writing is not a structure of ideas. It is a series of rhetorical exercises more properly ascribed to art than science. And I am not saying that it is NOT science: I am saying that Jung very profoundly takes literary art into science, as something that is absolutely intrinsic to his psychology. To return to 'Archaic Man', what to me is most important are the

tricksterish shifts in the writing designed to destabilise the western reader through his/her prejudices. Levy Bruhl is brought in to prop up the unfolding of the conventional view of 'primitives': 'he' enables Jung to repeatedly jump sideways to reveal the way moderns are equally 'primitive'. In effect the role of LB is to make the essay dialogical with the reader reeled more and more into Jung's own position of contemplating the primitve culture of Zurich. I really do not see him maintaining a view that moderns are psychologically more advanced! He does not say that the projection facility of moderns is of an absolutely different kind. Perhaps I am misreading and another member can put me right? best wishes, Susan Perhaps instead of rhetorically you might mean opportunistically. I have a great stake as a scholar in the importance and hortative possibilities of rhetoric! I like your idea, Susan, that Jung exports (imports?) the figurative (fiction?) into the scientific as a viable tool. It is exactly that which is what I am working on.

But I think that Jungs use of other scholars work to his own end in which process it is shifted closer to what he wants it to mean - is probably to one degree or another what every scholar does. After all, how can you detach your own sensibility in reading anothers work? And isnt that what Jung proposes we all inevitably do? I do not have trouble with that.

If you like, Jung has a specific style that is his own, that can be analyzed, and that does provide clues to the kind of scaffolding his theories rest on. This conforms to the notion of a private myth, accessible to scrutiny in ways Jung recommends investigating the subjective. Then he ties it up with anthropologists, philosophers, etc proposing that this or that might be a fruitful reference

While I do not care about whether or not Jung thought archaic man was sophisticated (I really, really dont), it is interesting that Jung notes that there is a difference in sensibility among cultures and peoples in their own times. It cannot be otherwise. Whether sophisticated is the right word or not is something else. LeviStrauss excavations into the savage mind reveal tremendous

sophistication in the primitive mind. I do not know Levy-Bruhls work sufficiently to figure that out in relation to his work, however.

Leslie Gardner

Dear John, It is very fascinating when you say that we demand of a text that it be a mandala with balance and proportion. That is a beautiful image of the way we are taught to read for coherence and to invoke the author as an author-ity for doing so. By this cultural practice, and it is a cultural practice not the only/natural way of reading, we create the author as the one god of the text. Only s/he can stabilise meaning. Of course, this is one of our many monothesitic practices. Science has them too. For example, the notion of a 'Theory of Everything' much debated, is another monotheistic structure as many scientists will agree. One does not have to believe in God to recognise the way monotheism continues to structure the learning of the west. As many have noted (James Hillman for one), Jung contains a strong monotheistic pull in his work: hence mandalas, the Self. However, he also contains a strong pull to polytheism and pluralism. Yes, you are quite right that the trickster is the enemy of monotheistic stability of truth/identity set against an-other. In my view, the trickster is the figure in Jung's writing where the unbearable tension between monotheistic rationality and polytheistic pluralism is enacted. In 'Archaic Man', Jung is faced with the kind of science or discourse that invokes his trickster-writer aspect. The kinds of coherent argument about the otherness of primitives delineated by LB, sets in motion a need to deconstruct the binary. 'Archaic Man' shows that the true others are us - a worthy project for the trickster, even if it leaves the reader bewildered. Yes, ethics demands the monotheistic rational writer, but, Jung shows, one who has an ongoing immersion in the dance of the trickster. Ethics means acting on the understanding of what it means to be the other - because we ourselves are that crude amoral, embodied, animal/divine. Just some thoughts! Susan (Rowland) ESSA OUTRA SUSAN Dear All, Many thanks to Robert for stimulating the discussion of Levy-Bruhl's influence on Jung (or Jung's opportunistic appropriation of Levy-Bruhl). It is good to see such serious work in the history of ideas.

Those who have an interest in the concept of the "primitive" and in the influence of Levy-Bruhl might like to have a look at the following: Pages 50-59 in my book The Multicultural Imagination: "Race," Color, and the Unconscious (Routledge 1996). In those pages I discuss and criticize the concept of the "primitive." I also discuss Levy-Bruhl (both How Natives Think and Primitive Mentality), and I provide a chart that illustrates differences between the "primitive" and the "civilized" (according to my reading of Levy-Bruhl). I also discuss Alfred Storch, Levi-Strauss, Kurt Goldstein, and Benjamin Lee Whorf in relation to Levy-Bruhl and the concept of the "primitive." Pages 99-100 in The Multicultural Imagination. These pages contain further material on LeviStrauss in contrast to Levy-Bruhl. Chapter 7, "Jung, Africa, and the 'Geopathology' of Europe," pages 149-167 in my book The Fantasy Principle: Psychoanalysis of the Imagination (Brunner-Routledge 2004). These pages contain material on the complicated relation between the "primitive" and the "civilized" in Jung's thought. Thanks to everyone for a wonderful conference. There are a lot of lovely people in the IAJS. Best regards, Michael Michael Vannoy Adams, D.Phil., L.C.S.W. Jungian Psychoanalyst Telephone: (212) 533-9395 Website: >From: John Morton <J.Morton@LATROBE.EDU.AU> >Reply-To: Discussion list of the International Association of Jungian studies <iajsdiscussion@LISTS.BIZHELPS.COM> >To: iajsdiscussion@LISTS.BIZHELPS.COM >Subject: Re: "PRIMITIVE," JUNG, AND LEVY-BRUHL >Date: Tue, 18 Jul 2006 15:39:37 +1000 > >I am just about to email Robert Segal a PDF copy of a paper I published >20 years ago on Levy-Bruhl in relation to Jung and Levi-Strauss ('Being >in Two Minds', Canberra Anthropology, 1986). If anyone else wants a >copy, let me know. >

My paper on witchcraft also explored some of the misconceptions in Jungs borrowings from anthropology and sociology. For instance, where he relies on Lvy-Bruhls theory of mystical participation (still in usage amongst many Jungians) he cites witchcraft belief as a perfect example of that capricious way of explaining things which is a characteristic of the prelogical state of mind. Where he leans on Hubert and Mausss categories of the imagination, he acknowledges that archetypal motifs play themselves out in the witchcraft beliefs of primitive humankind which he finds very interesting and very sensible actually more sensible than the academic views of modern science. Evans-Prtichards work on witchcraft amongst the Azande and Lvi-Strausss La Pense sauvage are, in part, critiques of LBs prelogical views which LB himself later revised. As Shamdasani writes in Jung and the Making of Modern Psychology: The Dream of a Science: In his later works, he dropped the designation mystical. Finally, the posthumously published notebooks of his last years strikingly revealed a repudiation of much of his earlier workAt the end of the day, Lvy-Bruhl himself was his most articulate critic. From my own experience in the anthropology department at LSE, I can confirm that Lvy-Bruhls name was rarely mentioned and then mostly dismissively but do recommend Shamdasanis

book as a meticulous exploration of where Jung sought and found inspiration from other disciplines. Best ever, Ann

Susan (and Mark). It seems to me that this boils down to the relationship between the One and the Many. It has many different inflections through time and place. In mathematics, for example, it is the binary between One and Zero, out of which everything is generated. It has resonances with Greek philosophies about identity (Aristotle) and change (Heraclitus). It is also embodied in religions where some superordinate principle connects all things and beings (so, for example, one cannot simply dub a totemic religion polytheistic when there is also such a superordinate unity as in the Australian Aboriginal case, where there is a determinate relationship between 'Dreamings' and 'The Dreaming', expressed as such within the indigenous languages). But the main point is that it is always a relationship between pure being and its undoing, which in the terms suggested here is the relationship between ego consciousness and the unconscious. The ego is by definition organised. Indeed, it is synchronic and homeostatic in its moment. It is One. The unconscious is what the ego is not and is compensatory only inasmuch as the ego adopts a false attitude - then the unconscious subverts the ego. It is fragmentary. But if the ego is true (truly knows itself), the unconscious quite rightly doesn't get a look in, if only for the 'time being'. In the case at hand, it can't just be a question of us being the 'true' others. One can only be other in relation to a self (and I've never quite been able to come at Jung's idea that there is an opposition between Ego and Self, which is a relationship 'one-to-one' rather than 'one-to-zero'). Sometimes that other will come from within us, compensating and pushing us towards a different state of selfhood and re-integration. Sometimes it won't be us and some other self will be our other. With projection, these two others can often be wrongly conflated and we mistake the other within for the other without. That's where objectivity and ethics meet - in recognition of the truth and the endeavour not to make the mistake. I'm not sure that Jung and LevyBruhl were good at detecting mistakes in their idea of the primitive. That primitive captivated them both and remained an object imbued with subjectivity not its own. As for the 'modern Western ego', what is that? My mum is Western, but has never heard of Descartes and won't buy anything green because it's extremely unlucky. When I work with some Aborigines and one tells me that, last night, he had a conversation with

an owl, I'm often reminded of my mum. On the other hand, when I work with some other Aborigines - the ones with PhDs and who are professors, I'm more inclined to think they're a bit more Cartesian. I just think that we mistake certain scholastic demands for 'Western thought', just as we mistake certain other local demands for 'their thought' (the mind of tribal peoples or of peasants - but maybe we should include the working class?). Minds do lots of different sorts of things. Science isn't actually very new; however, narrow specialisation in it by certain classes of people is pretty recent, but not the whole of recent history, in the West or anywhere. That's enough from me - but, by the way, can I add my thanks to the chorus praising the excellent conference. Cheers, John July 18 Dear all, I appreciate the growing discussion on Jung on "archaic man." Would that I had more time just now, but let me at least cite a few passages from just the essay with that title to confirm, in my opinion, that Jung accepts what he deems Levy-Bruhl's view of a divide between primitives and moderns and deems moderns more advanced than primitives: "a perfect example of that capricious way of explaining things which is characteristic of the 'prelogical' state of mind" CW 10, p. 52) "Primitive man is unpsychological. Psychic happenings take place outside him in an objective way" (p. 63) participation mystique is "an especially characteristic of primitive man" (p. 65) the distinction Jung draws between Pueblo Indians' literal identification of themselves with a bear and our modern metaphorical one (p. 65) archaic man "must de-psychize nature in order to dominate her; order to see his world objectively he must take back all his projections" (p. 67) True, as Susan argues, Jung also shows parallels between primitives and moderns, but at least to show that to a degree moderns retain primitive-like projections--but then onto other persons, not things. I can cite plenty of passages from other works of Jung. How odd it would be if he were to praise L-B for identifying the distinctiveness of primitive thinking yet then proceed to deny that distinctiveness. Doing so would not, for me, be a rhetorical strategy and in

but instead blatant inconsistency, and my respect for Jung would drop. I can see rhetoric employed to make a point, but not to undermine one.

Robert Segal Dear Robert and all, I want to try to open up our discussion of Archaic Man into myth and modernity. Doe myth have any relevance etc? and to return to some of the ground on which I started. Here is a quotation from your message: Jung's continual parallelling of primitives with children, and therefore of moderns with adults, confirms the point: "These considerations tempt us to draw a parallel between the mythological thinking of ancient man and the similar thinking found in children, primitives, and in dreams." (CW 5, pp. 22- 23) Yes, moderns dream, too, but Jung is not thereby dissolving the division he is making between primitives and children, not between moderns and children. END QUOTATION I do not think that in Archaic Man Jung is valuing moderns over primitives, although I will concede an earlier point by you that he does not entirely erode differences. However in the Jung quote above he is not equating ancient man with children primitives and dreams. He is equating the MYTHOLOGICAL thinking of ancient man with children, primitives and dreams. The equation children=primitives seems shocking to us and it is. But we must remember that Jung is a post-Romantic. His attitude here is congruent with Wordsworth's belief that the child psyche has access to the divine and nature tragically lost (original sin and the Fall) by modern man. OK Lets come at this another way. Jung's view of myth is the point where representation becomes the sculpting of reality: where subject and object lose their distinctiveness in a mutual creation. To put it another way, myth is the writing of the soul. It is both the best representation of the union of conscious and unconscious and, AT THE SAME TIME an intervention into that liminal space. Myth shapes and represents the psyche. The 'personal myth' that expresses Jung's intimate self-relation to his own psychology is merely one example. This 'personal myth' is not the 'atomised' end of myth in modernity confined to a single being. No, myth consists of the animation of archetypal images or symbols by the frame-work of a story. These animated 'matter', images draw energy, form and being from the surrounding culture. In fact, what Jung calls myth other cultural critics call 'discourse' (and his close relation to Bakhtin makes this even more evident!). So this is Jung's position on myth and it seems perfectly viable for

the twentyfirst century to me. If we accept Jung's re-definition of myth as a story that shapes the psyche, then we have an important tool to understand powerful narratives (ideologies, religious doctrines, discourses), and they mound subjects and societies. My point taken from this is that Jung writes experimentally. He writes from the whole psyche with - for him - its cultural tension between monotheistic oneness and polytheistic pluralism. So yes, there are different voices in his texts and sometimes the dominant one does not squash all of the 'other'! Jung's writing is the myth writing of the soul. It is artfully and tricksterishly designed to 'catch' the psyche of the reader in a net of words. Literary theory has evolved a rather crude notion of reader response theory to explore how a work may not consist of words on a page/screen. Rather a work is a creation of that liminal space between book-as-object and the consciousness of the reading subject. In Archaic Man, I concede there is the voice Robert hears making the rational errors of rational modernity. But I hear the mocking voice who is playing up the 'myth of the primitive' (here in a Barthes sense of myth as a cultural fiction), in order to trap the unwary modern reader. We are tricked into complacent superiority and then radically undermined. Indeed this trickster voice - to me seems to be drawing upon all this anthopological evidence to 'set up' the myth of the primitive just so he can 'set up' the reader. I argue that this functional and typological view of myth: that it is a cultural form with specific properties, a story of psychic experience/development, is a valuable one for today. It may not be corroborated by today's myth theorist, but I think Jung gives it to us. If we want it! best wishes, Susan (Rownland)