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A Library Guide to Jung's Collected Works

Explore Jungian psychology resources available from the Pacifica Graduate Library

Reference publications: Puer/Puella

Jung on the Puer/Puella archetype

Jung's essays on the Puer/Puella archetype from the Collected Works:

Additional resources on the Puer/Puella archetype

Print books available from the library:

Kirsch, T. B. (1974). A clinical example of puer aeternus identification. The Journal of Analytical Psychology, 19(2),

"Presents the clinical aspects of a patient identified with the puer aeternus archetype and points out many similarities to other cases. Interpretations and confrontations are effective with this type of patient. If interpretations are too early, however, the patient will abandon therapy; but if the therapist proceeds slowly the patient will gradually approach reality."

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Nelson, E. È. (2019). Puer-pater-senex: Toxic Masculinity and the generative father in an age of narcissism. Journal of Jungian Scholarly Studies, 14, 46–66.

"There is a suppurating father wound in the Western psyche that has manifested today in toxic masculinity and regression to patriarchy embodied in political strongmen. The wound is represented mythically by a recurrent classical theme of fathers who destroy their children rather than nurturing them—who, in fact, refuse to become fathers in any real or meaningful way. The wound also is inscribed in contemporary archetypal theory by an omission: Hillman's (2005) discussion of the puer-senex tandem names youth and elder but without the crucial role that mediates them, pater. Restoring the archetypal father to this tandem, one who values beneficence not brutishness, creates the more stable triad puer-pater-senex, a triad that is parallel to the female developmental pattern, maiden-mothercrone, drawn from goddess traditions. Supporting the emergence of the generative father, and seeing where he already exists in contemporary culture, can detoxify masculinity and help us recognize and confront toxic patriarchal leaders."

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Schwartz, S. E. (2009). Puella’s shadow. International Journal of Jungian Studies, 1(2), 111–122.

"Puella is the eternal girl, an aspect of the psyche that has been virtually ignored in the Jungian literature. She appears in the Western attitudes to be ever younger and thinner, devalued and stuck in the shadow of the patriarchy. Living ‘as if ’, she is bolstered by persona adaptation, masking the emptiness within, experiencing but not facing the narcissistic wounds. The attachment problems result in a distorted and split self-image, divorced from her body, and difficulty with intimacy and commitment. The dreams and writings from the American poetess Sylvia Plath illustrate parallels with the Puella figure. "

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