Beyond Marginality

Hardcover (Print)
Buy New
Buy New from
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $74.85
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 30%)
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (8) from $74.85   
  • New (7) from $74.85   
  • Used (1) from $129.95   


In The Marginal Self (1987), Ren^D'e J. Muller characterized what he saw as the phenomenon of marginality. Using existential anthropology, he argued that the Judeo-Christian tradition and the tradition of rationality, the bedrock of Western culture for over 2,000 years, no longer provided a satisfactory context for living. He showed how maginalizing choices made in an attenuated Western culture inevitably lead to pathological living and disillusion.

In Beyond Marginality, a sequel, Muller changes his perspective and ground and reinterrogates the phenomenon of the marginal self using the anthropology of Zen. He begins by making explicit the link between marginality and narcissism implied in The Marginal Self, and describes how the narcissistic marginal self developed in a dualistic culture that splits all lived experience in unlivable parts. He shows how the authenticity, freedom, and wholeness that the existentialists struggled to recover from the debris of metaphysics is calmly claimed by Zen as its birthright, originating as it does in a culture untouched by dualism. Using the existential concept of nothingness and the Zen notion of sunyata, Muller builds a bridge between the anthropologies of West and East. He shows how an intrinsically pathological Western culture can be partially reconstructed to go beyond marginality by incorporating elements of Zen's more authentic world view. This book will be of interest to graduate students and faculty in psychology, philosophy, and anthropology, as well as mental health professionals.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Muller expands on his existential analysis of marginality in (1987) informed by his subsequent expose to D. T. Suzuki's articulation of Zen. He moves from diagnosis to prescription, from describing what is lacking in western culture and the western self to projecting what might be done about it. His focus is on values and ethics and how to live in a post- Christian world where no values other than human values are recognized. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780275961312
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 7/30/1998
  • Pages: 150
  • Lexile: 1210L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

RENE J. MULLER works for the Crisis Intervention Service at Union Memorial Hospital in Baltimore.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

1 The Marginal Self and Narcissism 1
2 Zen and the Nonmarginal Response 17
3 Self into Nothingness, Nothingness into Self 37
4 The Possibilities for Authentic Happiness 61
5 Body as Nothingness, Body as Thing 79
6 The Therapeutic Text 105
7 Beyond Marginality: Narcissism Surpassed 117
Bibliography 129
Index 133
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

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

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & 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 & 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 & 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 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


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & 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 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)