The Collective Unconscious in the Age of Neuroscience brings the connection between C. G. Jung’s theory of a collective unconscious, neuroscience, and personal experiences of severe mental illness to life. Hallie B. Durchslag uses narrative analysis to examine four autobiographical accounts of mental illness, including her own, and illuminate the interplay between psychic material and human physiology that Jung intuited to exist.
Durchslag’s unique study considers the links between expressions of the collective unconscious, such as myth, fairy tales, folk tales, and ‘big dreams’, and the experiences of those diagnosed with severe mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia and bipolar I disorder. The author’s personal narrative account of a psychotic episode is at its heart, bringing both an intimate foundation and exceptional insight to the book. With reference to neuroscientific and genetic research throughout, The Collective Unconscious in the Age of Neuroscience highlights gaps in depth psychological notions of etiology and treatment, highlights patterns of collective material in the qualitative experience of these genetic and biological disorders, and explores how the efficacy of pharmacological treatment sheds light on Jung’s theoretical model.
The Collective Unconscious in the Age of Neuroscience will be essential reading for academics and students of Jungian and post-Jungian studies, consciousness, neuroscience and mental health. It will also provide unique insight for analytical psychologists interested in severe mental illness and the collective unconscious.