Ariadne's Clue: A Guide to the Symbols of Humankind

Paperback (Print)
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $22.98
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 53%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (10) from $22.98   
  • New (4) from $22.98   
  • Used (6) from $22.98   

Overview

"Stevens has a unique capacity for relating myths and symbols to the way our psyches function today, thus bringing symbols alive rather than dismissing them as historical curiosities. He is also a stylish writer, and is able to link his conclusions from a variety of fields into a consistent, readable whole."—Anthony Storr, University of Oxford

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

The Times Higher Education Supplement - John Habgood
This is a fascinating book, packed with ideas and out-of-the-way information. . . . a thesaurus of symbols. [Stevens] aim[s] to provide clues to the origin, meaning, and development of some of the most common symbols and, like Ariadne's thread, to trace connections between different parts of what seems like an impenetrable maze.
Discovery Channel - David Smillie
What sets this book apart from many others . . . is Stevens's viewpoint. He approaches symbols as an evolutionary psychologist . . . one who seeks to understand the biological reasons underlying our symbols. . . . [This] would be of interest to anyone who tries to understand themselves, whether they do it by biology, psychology, astrology, or tarot. The symbols are always there.
From the Publisher
"This is a fascinating book, packed with ideas and out-of-the-way information. . . . a thesaurus of symbols. [Stevens] aim[s] to provide clues to the origin, meaning, and development of some of the most common symbols and, like Ariadne's thread, to trace connections between different parts of what seems like an impenetrable maze."—John Habgood, The Times Higher Education Supplement

"What sets this book apart from many others . . . is Stevens's viewpoint. He approaches symbols as an evolutionary psychologist . . . one who seeks to understand the biological reasons underlying our symbols. . . . [This] would be of interest to anyone who tries to understand themselves, whether they do it by biology, psychology, astrology, or tarot. The symbols are always there."—David Smillie, Discovery Channel

"One need not be a Jungian to appreciate this fine book both as a reference and a contemporary introduction to symbolism. A brilliant integration of psychological archetypes with Darwinian theory. . . . Stevens presents vast learning easily and precisely in prose that is at once calm and exciting. . . . [A] standard—if not the standard—in the field; essential for most libraries."—Library Journal (starred review)

Discovery Channel
What sets this book apart from many others . . . is Stevens's viewpoint. He approaches symbols as an evolutionary psychologist . . . one who seeks to understand the biological reasons underlying our symbols. . . . [This] would be of interest to anyone who tries to understand themselves, whether they do it by biology, psychology, astrology, or tarot. The symbols are always there.
— David Smillie
The Times Higher Education Supplement
This is a fascinating book, packed with ideas and out-of-the-way information. . . . a thesaurus of symbols. [Stevens] aim[s] to provide clues to the origin, meaning, and development of some of the most common symbols and, like Ariadne's thread, to trace connections between different parts of what seems like an impenetrable maze.
— John Habgood
John Habgood
This is a fascinating book, packed with ideas and out-of-the-way information. . . . a thesaurus of symbols. Stevens aims to provide clues to the origin, meaning, and development of some of the most common symbols and, like Ariadne's thread, to trace connections between different parts of what seems like an impenetrable maze
The Times Higher Education Supplement
Library Journal
One need not be a Jungian to appreciate this fine book both as a reference and a contemporary introduction to symbolism. A brilliant integration of psychological archetypes with Darwinian theory. . . . Stevens presents vast learning easily and precisely in prose that is at once calm and exciting. . . . A standard--if not the standard--in the field; essential for most libraries.
David Smillie
What sets this book apart from many others . . . is Stevens's viewpoint. He approaches symbols as an evolutionary psychologist . . . one who seeks to understand the biological reasons underlying our symbols. . . . This would be of interest to anyone who tries to understand themselves, whether they do it by biology, psychology, astrology, or tarot. The symbols are always there.
Discovery Channel
Library Journal
One need not be a Jungian to appreciate this fine book as both a reference and a contemporary introduction to symbolism. Psychiatrist Stevens (Private Myths: Dreams and Dreaming, LJ 3/15/96) treats the specialist or lay reader to a brilliant integration of psychological archetypes with Darwinian theory. Symbols, a "natural Esperanto," transcend ethnic and linguistic boundaries while absorbing and reflecting cultural (as well as biological) influences. Stevens draws heavily on Jung but goes beyond him, making effective use of philosophy, semiotics, biology, and dream research. His "Thesaurus" (over 300 pages) is divided into four parts: Physical Environment; Culture and Psyche; People, Animals, and Plants; and The Body. Stevens presents vast learning easily and precisely in prose that is at once calm and exciting. A bibliography rich with recent references, a glossary, and a separate symbol index combine to make this a standard--if not the standard--in the field; essential for most libraries.--E. James Lieberman, George Washington Univ. Sch. of Medicine, Washington, DC
Booknews
Considering symbols "living entities with a life-cycle of their own" (that is, their meanings evolve rather than remain fixed), Stevens (a Jungian analyst and psychiatrist) begins this reference by exploring the origins, psychology, and use of symbols. The thesaurus that follows is arranged thematically, and individual symbols are examined in detail; but the author offers the caveat that individuals should examine their own personal meanings for a particular symbol before reading what he has to say about it. Small pen & ink illustrations enhance the presentation. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknew.com)
Read More Show Less

Product Details

Table of Contents

Contents
Acknowledgements vii
About This Book ix
PART I SYMBOLISM, EVOLUTION, AND PSYCHOLOGY
1 Ariadne's Clue 3
2 What is a Symbol? 12
3 The Evolution of Meaning 22
4 How Do SymbolsWork? 36
5 Basic Symbolic Themes 45
6 The Conjunction of Heaven and Earth 62
7 Living the Symbolic Life 77
PART II
THE EXPLANATORY THESAURUS
1 The Physical Environment 97
i Landscape 99
ii The psychic Compass 116
iii The Four Elements 123
iv alchemy 132
v Celestial Bodies 134
vi Colours 146
vii Buildings 150
viii Migration 1154
2 Culture and Psyche 161
i Religion and the Sacred 1170
ii Gods, Goddesses, and Demons 173
iii Creation Myths 195
iv Paradise and the Fall 200
v Heroes and Heroines 208
vi Initiation, Male and Female 2. 16
vii Eros and Psyche 220
viii Individuation and Transcendence 235
ix Death and Rebirth 256
x Morality 262
xi Sickness and Healing Z74
xii Tools, Weapons, Utensils, and Musical Instruments 280
xiii Transport 2911
xiv Performance and Ritual 298
3 People, Animals, and Plants 305
i Sex, Gender, Bonding, and Childrearing 306
ii Power: Dominance and Submission 323
iii Animals 332-
iv Monsters and Fabulous Beasts 367
v Plants, Fruits, and Trees 379
4 The Body 395
i Adornment, Clothes, and Nudity 396
ii Parts of the Body 401
iii Physical Activities 415
Bibliography 423
Glossary 433
General Index 439
Symbol Index

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)