Jungians welcomed into fold

September 1, 1995

The famous rift between Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung is healing - and it is happening in Colchester, according to one of the joint holders of the country's first chair in Jungian analysis.

The University of Essex has created the chair, which will help Jungian analytical psychologists in their quest for academic respect-ability - and lead to a centre in which Freudians and Jungians can work together.

The chair of analytical psychology is unusual because of its explicit dedication to Jungian analysis, and as such it may be the first in the world, says the Society of Analytical Psychology, which is funding it.

Jung was Freud's greatest disciple until their rift, after which Jung studied the spiritual and mystical sides of personality which Freud had derided. Jung rejected Freud's stress on sexuality.

In the 1960s and 1970s, Freudian ideas gained some academic respectability but Jung's influence remained outside academia, according to Andrew Samuels, joint holder of the new chair.

"We should also take our place in the academy now," he said. "I think something very fascinating lurks behind this chair."

He said that the two factions would now "start to have the kinds of disputes that academics have rather than the kind that sects have".

Professor Samuels, who is a senior Jungian training analyst in private practice and author of Jung and the Post-Jungians, will hold the chair jointly with Renos Papadopoulos, clinical psychologist at the Tavistock Clinic in London and also a training analyst.

Karl Figlio, of the Centre for Psychoanalytic Studies at the university, said that there may have been a rift originally between Jungians and Freudians, but changes over the last 30 or 40 years mean that a healthy relationship can now develop between the two.

He said the move would also encourage a link between Jungian theorists in universities and therapists in practice, who have been cut off from each other.

Speaking from the triennial congress on Jung, in Zurich, Professor Samuels said that academic interest in Jung in Britain was increasing. Professor Papadopoulos said: "I've noticed a remarkable change in the attitude of clinical psychologists to Jung."

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