Sunday, July 11, 2021

Carl Jung's Personality Structures Theory - summary

The Jungian psyche , as in the Freudian model, is structured by a whole series of constantly interacting systems. However, unlike the founder of psychoanalysis , we are faced with different psychic members and divergent functionality and dynamism which make up one's personality. 

Consciousness and I

Starting the review from consciousness and ending in the deepest layers of the psyche, we first find the Self , the nuclear center of our consciousness, actually constituting one more complex of those that make up the personal unconscious but which has become conscious and governing of our individuality.  Jung's Ego is equivalent to the conscious component of the Freudian Ego.

Personal unconscious 

In succession to the I, the personal unconscious makes an appearance, containing only information derived from the individual's personal experiences. Therefore, it receives all that material repressed by the I, the directionality being able to be reversed in such a way that said content is accessible to consciousness. The personal unconscious would be equal to the sum of the Freudian preconscious and unconscious .


Complexes reside as part of the personal unconscious . A complex would be defined as that set of emotionally charged concepts or images that acts as an autonomous "split" personality. At its core is an emotionally clothed archetype .

Collective unconscious 

And finally, in the depths of the human psyche we would find the collective unconscious , and with it, the last element of discrepancy with respect to the Freudian conflict. It is clear that while the Freudian model of the unconscious remains delimited by the personal, Jung expands its channels "ad infinitum."

Just as the structural element that made up the personal unconscious was the complex, in the case of the collective unconscious the archetype will be .

In this region, all the information inherited phylogenetically as a result of the universal experiences that occurred in the course of evolution is arranged in the form of symbols and predispositions . The archetypes would therefore be universal predispositions to perceive, act, or think in a certain way.


Main article: Archetypes, see also list of Jungian archetypes
Of the wide range of existing archetypes, such as birth, death , the hero , the puer aeternus , god , the senex , five are those that have reached a higher development than any other:


Main article: Persona
It is the mask that prevails in our daily social development, being able to be more or less developed, and therefore, to a greater or lesser extent hide our real personality. It is masculine in men and feminine in women.

Anima and Ánimus 

Main articles: Ánima and Ánimus .
These archetypes constitute the Jungian recognition of human bisexuality .
The Anima is the feminine aspect present in the collective unconscious of men. Ruled by its Eros principle , it is also often called the archetype of life .

The Animus is the masculine aspect present in the collective unconscious of women. Ruled by its Logos principle , it is also often called the archetype of meaning . 

Counterbalancing both to the Person archetype , they developed as a result of the set of experiences established between men and women throughout our evolutionary past.


Main article: Shadow
The shadow arcehtype represents our most primitive impulses, the animal instincts, originating from the prehuman ancestors of man. When these impulses set out on the path to consciousness, the Ego, in much the same way as the series of defense mechanisms of the Freudian Ego, allows either their expression or, if not pertinent, their subsequent repression , thereby in turn it contributes to generating content for the personal unconscious. Thus, an interrelation is established between the collective unconscious, the archetype, the conscious self and the personal unconscious.

The self

Main article: Self
The archetype of the Self (in German Selbst ) constitutes the archetype par excellence, the nuclear or central archetype of the collective unconscious, the most important of all. It is also called the archetype of the hierarchy and represents the totality of the human being and the ultimate goal in the individuation process .

It is represented symbolically from a mandala or magic circle, and in the same way that the I is constituted as the center of consciousness, the Self is the center that contains the totality of "consciousness" and "unconscious". Represents the efforts of the human being to achieve unity, totality, the integration of the personality, striving for both the unity of the individual with respect to the outside world and for the unity of their psychic systems. Prior to said integration process, sufficient differentiation must be established between the systems, an aspect that is not achieved until middle age.