|E-mail||ccrell (non Essex users should add @essex.ac.uk)
|Supervisor||Professor Andrew Samuels
|Thesis title||What Value Does Jung's Theory of Personality Have? A Critical Historical Study
The research aim is to foreground Jung’s ideas on personality, making Jung the central focus. The thesis includes two pieces of bibliographic research. The first is a comprehensive reading and detailed search of Jung’s published work in English in order to extract material relevant to his personality theory. The second is a review of the presentation of Jung’s work in US and UK textbooks on personality from the 1930’s to the first years of the twenty-first century. I argue that Jung’s work constitutes a theory of personality and support my argument by comparing Jung’s work with criteria established by early and later personality theorists from Allport in the 1930’s to Magnavita in 2002. I take the position that the entirely of Jung’s work including his alchemical studies and essays on religion are relevant to the development of his main theoretical concepts such as the Self, the archetypes, the relationship between the conscious and the unconscious, the notion of individuation, and for the practice of psychotherapy.
I examine the religious background to Jung’s work and its relevance for his personality theory, his lifelong interest in alchemy, and his concept of archetypes. My aim is to show that these areas of Jung’s work, not generally associated with theories of personality, have relevance and importance for understanding some of the Jung’s most central ideas, and that these ideas are part of the matrix of a complex theory of human individuality.
The purpose is to critically examine Jung’s theory of personality, as I have defined it, in the light of specific evaluative criteria developed for the thesis, and to come to a conclusion as to its value and importance within the field of personality theory.