The Red Book

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Overview

The most influential unpublished work in the history of psychology.“The years, of which I have spoken to you, when I pursued the inner images, were the most important time of my life. Everything else is to be derived from this. It began at that time, and the later details hardly matter anymore. My entire life consisted in elaborating what had burst forth from the unconscious and flooded me like an enigmatic stream and threatened to break me. That was the stuff and material for more than only one life. Everything later was merely the outer classification, the scientific elaboration, and the integration into life. But the numinous beginning, which contained everything, was then.”
These are the words of the psychologist C. G. Jung in 1957, referring to the decades he worked on The Red Book from 1914 to 1930. Although its existence has been known for more than eighty years, The Red Book was never published or made available to the wide audience of Jung’s students and followers. Nothing less than the central book of Jung’s oeuvre, it is being published now in a full facsimile edition with a contextual essay and notes by the noted Jung scholar Sonu Shamdasani and translated by Mark Kyburz, John Peck, and Sonu Shamdasani.
It will now be possible to study Jung’s self-experimentation through primary documentation rather than fantasy, gossip, and speculation, and to grasp the genesis of his later work. For nearly a century, such a reading has simply not been possible, and the vast literature on his life and work has lacked access to the single most important document. This publication opens the possibility of a new era in understanding Jung’s work. It provides a unique window into how he recovered his soul and constituted a psychology. It is possibly the most influential hitherto unpublished work in the history of psychology.
This exact facsimile of The Red Book reveals not only an extraordinary mind at work but also the hand of a gifted artist and calligrapher. Interspersed among more than two hundred lovely illuminated pages are paintings whose influences range from Europe, the Middle East, and the Far East to the native art of the new world. The Red Book, much like the handcrafted “Books of Hours” from the Middle Ages, is unique. Both in terms of its place in Jung’s development and as a work of art, its publication is a landmark.
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Editorial Reviews

Michael Dirda - Washington Post
“This is a volume that will be treasured by the confirmed Jungian or by admirers of beautifully made books or by those with a taste for philosophical allegory.”
Washington Post
In short, this is a volume that will be treasured by the confirmed Jungian or by admirers of beautifully made books or by those with a taste for philosophical allegory.”— Michael Dirda
Michael Dirda
…recalls an allegorical-mythological amalgam of Nietzsche's Also Sprach Zarathustra, Blake's illuminated poems, Renaissance Neoplatonic dialogue, Eastern scripture, Dante's Inferno, Yeats's "A Vision" and even the biblical book of Revelation…certainly one of the most distinctive gift books of the upcoming holiday season. With a rich crimson dust jacket, thick cream-colored paper and calligraphied pages, this huge tome is the size of a lectern Bible and looks like the kind of spell book a wizard might consult …In short, this is a volume that will be treasured by the confirmed Jungian or by admirers of beautifully made books or by those with a taste for philosophical allegory.
—The Washington Post
Kathryn Harrison
Do the decades between the completion and publication of The Red Book render it less potent or interesting? Not at all…The Red Book not only reminds us of the importance of introspection, but also offers a guide to separating the self from the spirit of a time that would have astonished and offended Jung with its endless trivial distractions, its blogs and tweets and chiming cellphones. The creation of one of modern history's true visionaries, The Red Book is a singular work, outside of categorization. As an inquiry into what it means to be human, it transcends the history of psychoanalysis and underscores Jung's place among revolutionary thinkers like Marx, Orwell and, of course, Freud. The dedication—the love—with which it was assembled makes The Red Book as beautiful and otherworldly as a medieval book of hours.
—The New York Times
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780393065671
  • Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 10/19/2009
  • Edition description: Fascimile - German/English
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 93,710
  • Product dimensions: 12.25 (w) x 18.25 (h) x 2.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Born in 1875, C. G. Jung was a Swiss psychiatrist and innovative thinker whose most influential ideas include the concept of psychological archetypes, the collective unconscious, and synchronicity. He is the author of numerous works, including Memories, Dreams, Reflections and Man and His Symbols. He died in 1961.

Sonu Shamdasani is a preeminent Jung historian at University College London and the author of C. G. Jung: A Biography in Books. He lives in London.

Sonu Shamdasani is a preeminent Jung historian at University College London and the author of C. G. Jung: A Biography in Books. He lives in London.

Mark Kyburz, Ph.D., specializes in German into English scholarly translation. Over the past twenty years, he has translated numerous books and articles in various areas of the humanities and social sciences. He is currently working on the lectures that C. G. Jung delivered at the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule from 1933 to 1941. He lives in Zürich.

John Peck has taught literature at Princeton, Mount Holyoke, Skidmore, and the University of Zurich, and worked as a Jungian analyst in New England for fifteen years. The author of Collected Shorter Poems and Red Strawberry Leaf, he has translated Luigi Zoja, edits for the Philemon Foundation, and lives in Connecticut.

Sonu Shamdasani is a preeminent Jung historian at University College London and the author of C. G. Jung: A Biography in Books. He lives in London.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 78 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(48)

4 Star

(10)

3 Star

(10)

2 Star

(4)

1 Star

(6)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 78 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 11, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Legendary DocumentI Never Thought I Would See...

    Over the years as a psychologist, I have studied or at least read the works of the major theorists in the art of psychotherapy.

    The Red Book has been a legend that has been clothed in secrecy. So much is available by and about Carl Jung's work, but this personal creative exploration has never been more than a fantasy.

    This publication and availability from B&N so soon after publication is truly a gift. I pre-ordered it after reading the New York Times Magazine article. I expected a normal sized volume, that I would be able to carry with me on a plane trip. What arrived was a very large work of art, a magnificent and detailed document created by and honoring one of the greatest minds in analytical psychology.

    I sit in a great easy chair and become enveloped in it's artistic and puzzling content, a visual and intellectual masterpiece to treasure and to pass down to my children.

    15 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 16, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Carl Jung, The Red Book

    This book is a treasure for all interested in Carl Jung. The first half or so of the book is a life size or bigger copy of this prior secret thoughts and ruminations in an illuminated lettering style, thus this part of the book is in Swiss or German. The plates representing Jungs drawings and dream images are clear, detailed, exhibiting a robust color.
    The second half of the book (English) is descriptive with many writings of Jung that demonstrate the process he worked through while discovering and figuring just what were these inner voices such as anima , animus, shadow whickh led him to many of his theroies - personal , collective unconcious and Archetypes.
    The book provides further understanding of this great man who in my opinion is the most significant person to discover so much about how the human mind, soul and spirit work - while inspiring many self help and new age books. The only drawback is the cumbersome size but then you wouldn't get the great prints.

    9 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 16, 2010

    A profound work of love and art

    Finally having access to C.G. Jung's Red Book is an opening into the mind of one of the most profound thinkers of the 20th Century. It is not an easy read, but then it is a profound journey into the mind of Jung as he made his journey. That the heirs of Carl Jung and the commitment of Sonu Shamdasani could bring this to the eyes of the reader after all these years is a gift for current and future scholars of the work of C.G. Jung.

    The beauty of the reproduction is breathtaking, and the translation is for me the key to access to Jung's writing.

    For the student of Jung, this is a gem, and is the start to yet another level of understanding of his, and our journey of individuation.

    Highly recommended.

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2010

    Hard to rate since it still has not shipped 5 weeks after the promised ship date

    Can't wait to get it- Emailed twice to find out what is going on, but BN reps don't seem to have a clue about when this really is going to be available. Don't believe any "expected ship dates" listed :(

    5 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2010

    How long???

    Ordered this book almost two months ago and it still has not been shipped yet!

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 7, 2010

    Where is it?

    You keep telling me you are shipping this book to me since Dec 15 and I still haven't seen it.

    3 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Fantastic! A must have for Jung's fans

    All of us who love C.G.Jung's work, have heard of the tough time he went through around 1912-1913, and know that from that dark period emerged most of Jung's original ideas and theories. We knew that he spent that time in contact with his own unconscious, but we hadn't been able to see much of what he produced during that period. And now we have it all here, in this beautiful edition! Thanks to Sonu Shamdasani, Norton and Jung's heirs for making this possible!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 12, 2009

    if you like Jung"s work and what it represents, this is the best book to hold in your lab and will last a life time to sit with!

    The publication of this book provides many opportunities for re mem bering.
    Thank you.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2010

    Truly A Work of ART!!!

    I have bought several copies and given this book as a gift. Each person has been greatly surprised at the artwork here. It is amazing that Jung was such a great artist and the reproductions in the book are astonishing. The images are very powerful. The first part of the book is in German and beautiful copy of Jung's original Red Book. The second part is the translation in English. Jung takes you through this very personal journey into his shadow. The images are archetypal and have a lot of power. I did not realize this until reading the book and discovered how vivid my dreams became. The study of this book will take time is and quite a journey. A must read for anyone interested in self development!!!!!!!!!!!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 8, 2010

    Amazing

    This is the book everybody would like to have it in their library. Its marvellous illustrations can make anyone breathless.
    The organization - first the facsimile of Jung's work and then the translation - and the overall presentation are outstanding.
    The book is 40cm height and 30cm wide and may not fit in a smal bookshelf.
    Despite it took long time to arrive, it was delivered in a very good package.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 7, 2010

    BEAUTIFUL ILLUSTRATIONS, Insightful text

    For a person with a passing interest in Jung, as opposed to a professional in psychology, The Red Book is a window into both Jung's thinking and his artistic expression. For those of us who don't read a word of German, the translation in the back opens the door to Jung's writing. The color plates are spectacular.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 16, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    The Red Book

    Absolutely Stunning! It is the Grand Canyon of Books.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 10, 2014

    Perfect gift for those interested in all things Jung!

    I purchased this as a gift for a friend who is working on her certification as teacher of mandalas. She was thrilled and said that it's a gift for a lifetime. It was worth every penny!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 5, 2013

    gorgeous book

    This facsimilie edition is a library copy of Jung's Red Book--it's large and it's heavy. It's also gorgeous. The drawings and the calligraphy and the illuminated letters are amazing--vibrant colors, beautiful penmanship, detailed, startling images . The Red Book provides a glimpse inside Jung's mind and makes him seem more human--and, therefore, more accessible--than the dry academic readings often assigned in college psychology classes do.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 27, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    This is the ONE book that is an ABSOLUTE must for any Jungian fan!

    This is Jung's private 'book' never meant for publication. He kept it secret and shared it with only a few friends, yet, it occupied the most honored place in his library. It was prominently displayed, but no one could touch it!

    This book is the seed and root of everything Jung published over his entire life. Everything sprang from this one book. And, since it was private and only written for himself, it is very readable. He uses common language and leaves out practically all of the Greek and Latin that belabors his 'scientific' works. Also, this is the story of his dealings with the Western God. It was written before his forays into alchemy, and before he accumulated his vast knowledge of Eastern religions.

    The RED BOOK is Jung's journaled documentation of the psychic events in his life beginning around World War I. It contains about a decade of his earliest visions and works. This is the readers edition which contains only the English translation of this work without his added artistic paintings as illustrations or the original calligraphic German text. It is a very convenient size and feels like a bible in your hands. I think the publisher had this in mind, because, in a real sense, this is Jung's sacred book.

    The entire Red Book has already been published in its original large size containing very high quality photographic reproductions of the actual pages of the book and the English translation at the end. It is a very beautiful book. Jung's German calligraphy is beautiful, and his art work is stunning. It's pretty obvious that Jung could have been a major artist if he had wanted to follow that path. But this large book is very ungainly to read, and to be frank, I couldn't put a mark in it (And who can read Jung without annotating the book?).

    This smaller and much cheaper book fills an important gap. It is very convenient to read and I am marking and annotating mine to death. This is the ONE book that is an ABSOLUTE must for any Jungian fan!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 30, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Brilliant exegesis

    no one delved into their subconscious like jung, except perhaps nietzsche in Zarathustra. but this my friends is a must have.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 10, 2011

    A must for anyone interested in Jung or in beautiful books!

    Stunningly & beautifully reproduced. Aesthetically amazing even if you aren't a devotee or scholar and never read it. Astonishing if you choose to actually read it (in the original high German or the English or both).

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2010

    Yeah.

    sounds like a great book and all...but why is it so expensive?!?!?

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2010

    Dazzling

    A beautiful book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 26, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 78 Customer Reviews

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