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From Somnambulism to the Archetypes
The French Roots of Jung's Split With Freud
John Ryan Haule

This article was published in The Psychoanalytic Review 71(4) (1984): pp. 635-659.

          According to the common view of Jung as the rebellious crown prince of psychoanalysis, his doctrine of the archetypes appears, at worst, a lightheaded fascination with occultism or, at best, a way to overcome the historical and personalistic reductionism of the Freudian doctrine of sexual stages. Against the background of German thought and East-of-the-Rhine psychiatric interests, one is inclined to discuss whether the neuroses are bred in a biographical or an archaeological matrix, or whether we have genes or culture to thank for universal patterns. Quite another field of discussion opens up if we begin by noting the geographical fact that Zurich lies West of the Rhine. Jung's connections with Geneva and Paris are far more important than usually assumed; his French heritage is almost suppressed as some kind of secret. Probably the explanation for this is in the overwhelming success of psychoanalysis, as a result of which the earlier French psychologists have been largely forgotten. Now, due to their rediscovery by Ellenberger (1970), Jung's dissent from the doctrines of psychoanalysis appears in a new light. As we gain new appreciation for the psychological investigations being conducted at the turn of the century by the French hypnotists and their English speaking followers, it is difficult to avoid the impression that the doctrine of the archetypes emerged in Jung's thought as a means to wed the best of Freud with the best of Janet.

Dissociation Psychology

          The story begins in the seventeenth century with Descartes, who set the course for pre-psychological philosophy with his disciplined naiveté in asking what we can really be sure we know. Succeeding philosophers doubted progressively more and were able to be sure of progressively less until the development culminated in the "radical associationism" of David Hume. Introspection alone being trusted as an investigating tool, associationists divested themselves of metaphysical presuppositions to limit themselves to the bare facts: the conscious stream of images and ideas. These they conceived on the model of Newtonian physics, as something akin to tiny spheres of matter in motion, determined by laws of attraction and repulsion. The problem was to explain how simple ideas combined to form complex ideas, as Hume points out in his opening remarks in A Treatise of Human Nature (1739):

Were ideas entirely loose and unconnected, chance alone would join them; and `tis impossible that some simple ideas should fall regularly into complex ones (as they commonly do) without some bond of union among them, some associating quality by which one idea naturally introduces another. (p. 1)

Self-observation led Hume to the conviction that there were three associating qualities: resemblance, contiguity in time or place, and cause and effect. Others held that anything but contiguity was too subjective.

          Although sober and close to everyday experience -- especially in comparison with the romantic German system builders -- this tradition provided a rather narrow and mechanistic foundation for psychology. Hence the enthusiasm with which the French psychologist Alfred Binet (1892) greeted the publication of Frédéric Paulhan's L'activité mentale et les éléments de l'esprit (1889): The sterile doctrine of associationism had finally been overcome. "Paulhan has considerably reduced the part attributed to the association of ideas, and shown that these associations are only workmen in the service of the higher influence that direct them" (p. 352). Paulhan was the philosophical spokesman for a movement of vast proportions which, in its clinical interests, concerned itself primarily with what was known at the time as hysteria and with the therapeutic and experimental tool of hypnosis. Closely associated with these was the passionate popular interest in the phenomena of spiritualism, which had spawned both parlor games and conscientious investigating bodies. (The London Society of Psychical Research and its American counterpart were both formed in the early 1880s.)

          The old philosophical associationism was transformed into the experimental and mystical movement known as "dissociationism" by no means as opposed to the first as the name might imply. Dissociationism accepted the notion that ideas and images tend to combine into complexes, but conceptualized the process very differently. Rejecting (forever) the concept of mental Newtonian forces, they held that every aggregation of ideas and images possessed, in some measure or other, its own personality. The guiding image for this was the phenomenon of multiple personality, for which there was already a hundred-year-old therapeutic tradition, going back to Mesmer, Puységur, Despine, Azam, and the people Janet calls the "French alienists." In the most spectacular of their cases, such as Despine's Estelle (the late 1830s) and Azam's Félida X (principally during the 1860s), a second "personality" emerged which was free of the neurotic symptoms of the first. Janet (1907) calls Félida "the educator of Taine and Ribot," without whom "it is not certain that there would be a professorship of psychology at the Collége de France" (his own chair; p. 78).

          Dissociationism replaced Newtonian causality with a principle of teleology, summarized in Paulhan's book (1889) by three laws:

  1. The Law of Systematic Association. "Every psychic fact tends to enter into partnership with and to give rise to psychic facts which can harmonize and cooperate with itself toward a common goal or toward compatible goals which can comprise a system." (p. 88)

  2. The Law of Inhibition. "Every psychic phenomenon tends to impede the manifestation and development of or to banish from sight the psychic phenomena which it cannot assimilate according to the law of systematic association, that is to say the phenomena which it cannot assimilate in the interests of a common goal." (p. 221)

  3. The Law of Contrast. "A psychic state tends to be accompanied (simultaneous contrast) or followed (successive contrast) by a state which opposes it or which at least in some respects is its contrary." (p. 315f)

More simply expressed, the first law describes how the subpersonalities of multiple personality arise; the second describes their mutual animosity; and the third their alternating or simultaneous appearance in the consciousness and behavior of the individual.

          Interest in dédoublement de la personnalité has risen and fallen with time. Its greatest period of scientific and popular favor, however, was the last two decades of the nineteenth century, between the year (1882) Jean-Martin Charcot convinced the French Academy of Science that hypnosis was not beneath its dignity as an object and tool for research and the year (1900) Sigmund Freud revealed psychoanalysis to the world in his book, The Interpretation of Dreams. During this time, the main tool of psychological research and therapy was hypnosis; the main psychological phenomenon of interest was somnambulism, of which multiple personality and spiritualism were varieties; and the main psychological disorder was hysteria. Hypnosis, hysteria, and spiritualism are a variants of somnambulism, which, in psychological parlance at the turn of the century, referred to any rather complex act performed while asleep, in trance, or in some other "altered state of consciousness" -- to use the expression in vogue today.

          Dissociationism was never "disproven." It merely fell out of favor for a few decades because the sexual stages of psychoanalysis and the reflex arc of behaviorism were found to be sufficiently satisfying models by a sufficiently large number of psychologists. Yet, the heuristic image of multiple personality never disappeared entirely from psychological discussion. People like Pierre Janet, Morton Prince of Boston, and the Harvard psychologist, William McDougall -- not to mention Jung -- continued to favor it during the decades of its eclipse. Since the late 1950s, dissociation psychology has re-emerged in several areas of investigation: research in hypnosis (Frankel, 1976; Gill & Brenman, 1959; J. Hilgard, 1970; E. Hilgard, 1977) the anthropological study of altered states of consciousness (Bourguignon, 1965, 1968, 1973, 1974, 1976; Crapanzano, 1973; Crapanzano & Garrison, 1977; Figge, 1972, 1973a, 1973b; Goodman, Henny, & Pressel, 1974); and the psychological study of altered states in which new theories about psychic complexes are being developed, sometimes in apparent ignorance of the older ones (Fischer, 1970; Goodwin, Powell, Bremer, Heine, & Stern, 1969; Grof, 1977; Leuner, 1962; Overton, 1968). In addition there have been many reports of cases of multiple personality in recent years, the number of published reports being a rough index of the scientific acceptability of multiple personality as heuristic image. Finally, popular interest in spiritualism of all kinds runs very high again today, as it did then. just as the dissociationism of a hundred years ago appeared to be a recovery from the two centuries in which scientific zeal had attempted to force the facts of our psychic life into the Procrustean bed of Newtonian mechanics, so the recent rise of dissociationism may be a response to several decades of psychoanalytic and behavioristic reductionism".

          As an alternative to the associationists' Newtonian model, dissociation psychology recommended itself for at least three reasons. First, it replaced the impersonal, atomic level mechanisms more appropriate to psychics and astrology with a kind of holistic personalism, which appears more adequate for understanding the experience and behavior of human individuals. Second, it seemed even more "scientific" in that it relied on what seemed to be pure observation; for even the untrained observer could see that two or more trains of thought may run simultaneously (as in conversing while driving a car). But a compelling adjunct to this was the fact that there exist lower life forms, well-known in biology, in which larger individuals are comprised of colonies of simpler individuals. Many dissociationists gave prominent mention to this fact; Sidis and Goodhart (1904) provide a whole chapter, with pictures. The third advantage of dissociationism is that it formed a natural basis for understanding pathology. A generally accepted theory of psychopathology had not yet been advanced, particularly not one involving the neuroses. The image of multiple personality filled this void by speaking of the degree of amnesia separating one stream of images from another. Hysteria appeared to be understood for the first time; perhaps other psychological disturbances could be seen as variants on hysteria.

Janet: Dissociation and Exhaustion

          Pierre Janet wrote the definitive work in the field of dissociation psychology, L'automatisme psychologique (1889, his doctoral thesis in philosophy, completed before he began work on his medical degree). In the book he carefully articulates a description of hysteria on the basis of several case histories. One of the most important of these is that of Lucie, a twenty-year-old woman who had had convulsions in her early childhood and attacks of blindness around the age of nine. When Janet first saw her, she suffered from hysterical crises of five hours' duration, marked by convulsions and periods of rigid posturing in which she appeared horror-struck with her unseeing eyes fixed on the curtains of the room. She also had periods of somnambulism in which she would be talkative, have an appetite and eat, or do her bookkeeping. While bookkeeping, she would be able to see only the ledger book and its figures, remaining oblivious to all other stimuli. She could keep books only in her somnambulic state.

          Through hypnosis, Janet discovered three states of consciousness, labeled Lucie 1, Lucie 2, and Lucie 3. Lucie I depended almost entirely on the visual sense, although her visual field was considerably smaller than normal; she was totally anaesthetic over her entire body. Lucie 2 was dependent primarily upon the tactile sense and fairly blind, though her hearing was somewhat better than that of Lucie 1. Lucie 2 was the one who assumed the posture of terror. Lucie 3, attainable only after a great deal of intense hypnotic induction, had both tactility and vision, and more completely than either of the other two states. Lucie 3 remembered the trauma at age nine which appears to have conditioned at least the attitudes of terror. She had been frightened by some men who had hidden behind a curtain. The other two personalities did not remember this event. To put the conclusions of L'automatisme simply, Lucie I and Lucie 2 both suffered from a restriction of their fields of consciousness. These two restricted fields, furthermore, did not overlap, either in sensation or in memory. Thus the two states were neatly dissociated. Lucie 3 is their integration. When her memories were made available to the other two states, Lucie's hysterical condition was cured.

          The evidence of several such cases inclined Janet to place heavy emphasis on the fixed idea: for example, that men will be hiding behind curtains to do Lucie harm.

To have one's body in the posture of terror is to feel the emotion of terror; and if this posture is determined by a subconscious idea, the patient will have the emotion alone in his consciousness without knowing why he feels this way. "I'm afraid and I don't know why," Lucie can say at the beginning of her crisis when her eyes take on a wild look and her arms make gestures of terror. The unconscious is having its dream; it sees the men behind the curtain and puts the body in a posture of terror. (p. 409, emphasis added)

As the dissociated idea seemed to hold the secret of hysteria, Janet undertook a series of studies on the characteristics and functions of the fixed ideas of his patients. Several of these papers, collected in the first volume of Névroses et idées fixes (1898), led to the conclusion that hysteria is unique among the neuroses in its propensity for complete and enduring dissociation. Consequently a new theory of psychopathology was required and appeared in 1903 as the two volume work, Obsessions et la psychasthénie.

          The patients Marcelle (Janet, 1891) and Justine (Janet, 1894) both appeared to change their pathology under the influence of Janet's treatment. Both manifested distinguishable states of consciousness (like the dissociation in hysteria), and in both cases the somnambulic state could be duplicated by hypnosis (again like hysteria). But in both cases, when the fixed ideas were made conscious, they did not become integrated with the dominant personality (as in the cure for hysteria); rather both patients became obsessive. Their fixed ideas persisted as absurd images and fears. But instead of being completely dissociated, they were present in consciousness and appreciated as absurd though they could not be managed. Janet states:

These obsessions have, at least in the present case, their origins in a very deep state; in this state, they would be clear and affirmative and have the form of fixed ideas and hallucinations. But now the state which gave them birth has disappeared and they subsist half effaced but tenacious and enter into conflict with consciousness and common sense. (1894, p. 31)

          Neurosis can therefore not be identical with dissociation, nor can the severity of neurosis be an index of the degree of dissociation. For the severe obsessive suffers no less than the severe hysteric, although his or her dissociation is less complete. Furthermore, Marcelle also manifested "abulia." Given the task of picking up an object from the table before her, she would hesitate 1 to 2 minutes before picking up her own crocheting needle or 10 to 12 minutes before picking up Janet's pencil. With practice, she could manage to pick up the pencil as "quickly" as the needle, though when presented with a new object, she had the same difficulties all over again. (Janet apparently did not recognize the probable importance of "transference" issues in such cases.) But when distracted, she could pick up any such object without hesitation. Janet concluded from this that the neurotic's voluntary (conscious) functions are weak. The act of picking up a pencil proceeds smoothly when it is performed "automatically" (unconsciously) or when it has been laboriously integrated into consciousness by practice. The difficulties begin when the subject has to voluntarily decide upon a new action and then to carry it out. What is lacking to Marcelle in her abulia is the "mental synthesis" required to represent to herself the act of picking up the pencil (Janet, 1894). ("Mental synthesis" is the composite whole made up of the objects comprising the conscious field as well as the notion of an ego capable of acting upon those objects.)

          Examination of the fixed ideas, therefore, brought Janet to the conclusion that their presence and activity is independent of the phenomenon of dissociation. Sometimes the patient's symptoms went beyond the fixed ideas (such as Marcelle's abulia), and sometimes fixed ideas may be replaced by others without essential change in the patient's condition (such as Justine's panic fear of cholera giving way to an hilarity over the comic Chinese military general, "Cho-lé-ra''). The fixed idea, Janet concluded, is a secondary symptom of mental weakness. Neurosis is this weakness -- generally a constitutional weakness which develops into neurosis when the individual "exhausts" himself with overwork, emotional shocks, or illness (Janet, 1930). In hysteria the mental synthesis is weakened so that whole blocks of functions become dissociated (e.g., paralysis and anaesthesia of an arm). In abulia it is weakened so that decisions cannot be reached or acted upon. In an obsession it is weakened so that fixed ideas cannot be criticized or integrated.

          Consequently, by the turn of the century, the dominant theme in Janet's works was that of exhaustion (épuisement) or of lowering the mental level (abaissement). This theme had at least four advantages. First, it did not conflict with the well-documented phenomena of dissociation (in all degrees from normal to severely disturbed). Second, it was a superior principle on which to base a psychopathology, for all neurotics suffered from exhaustion although not all were abnormally dissociated. Third, the theory did not excuse the psychologist from studying each patient separately and appreciating his individuality. "For those who, like me, claim not to understand very well the general theories of fixed ideas, each patient is interesting in himself and demands to be analyzed in isolation" (1898, p. xiv). Fourth, and probably most important, the theory of exhaustion was "objective" in two senses. It is objectively verifiable in its effects (feelings of fatigue, uncompleted actions, etc.), and it is a universal principle -- quite unlike a fixed idea -- the content of which is peculiar to the individual. In contrast, a dissociation theory based on the fixed idea as identifier presents the psychologist with a great difficulty. Understanding occurs when generals (concepts) are applied to particulars (individuals), but fixed ideas are always particular.

Freud: Dissociation and Causality

          Freud's roots in French dissociationism are indisputable. In 1885-1886, he spent some months listening to Charcot's lectures in Paris at the Salpêtrière. Shortly thereafter, he published German translations of two books of the Nancy hypnotist and outspoken critic of the Paris school, Hippolyte Bernheim. He was also rebuffed in Vienna for his too enthusiastic report on the work of Charcot. In 1895, Breuer and Freud made the researches of Binet and the brothers Janet (Pierre and Jules) the starting point in their Studies on Hysteria:

We have become convinced that the splitting of consciousness which is so striking in the well-known classical cases under the form of la dédoublement de la personnalité is present to a rudimentary degree in every hysteria, and that a tendency to such a dissociation, and with it the emergence of abnormal states of consciousness . . . is the basic phenomenon of this neurosis. In these views we concur with Binet and the two Janets, though we have had no experience of the remarkable findings they have made on anaesthetic patients. (p. 12)

          Already in 1895, however, Freud was diverging in a major way from the thinking of Janet: In place of Janet's skepticism about the diagnostic value of the fixed idea, Freud made the assumption that it defined the dissociation. For example, in Breuer's paradigmatic case, Anna 0 suffered from paralysis of the right arm, amnesia for her mother tongue, German, and the obsessive image (fixed idea) of a black snake. Aside from the hallucinatory image, these symptoms represent losses of function; the functions of speaking German and exercising the right arm have been dissociated from the ego. The only thing which remains as an addition to consciousness is the unassimilated image of the black snake. As the "talking cure" moved backward through the events of Anna's life, it reached the moment when she sat beside her father's sickbed with her right arm "asleep," as it hooked over the back of the chair.

She fell into a waking dream and saw a black snake coming towards the sick man from the wall to bite him. . . . She tried to keep the snake off, but it was as though she was paralyzed [particularly the right arm]. . . . When the snake vanished, in her terror she tried to pray. But language failed her . . . till at last she thought of some children's verses in English. (p. 38f)

The hallucination of the snake is the sole memory of an event which Anna has unconsciously banished from memory. The paralysis and amnesia for German are linked to this fixed idea as important elements of the incident in which the hallucination first occurred. The symptoms are a vestige, a "reminiscence" of an event dissociated from consciousness. The cause for the whole procedure is the emotional shock which brought it on.

          Janet had been aware that such traumatic events could occasion an hysterical condition and had published several cases demonstrating it. What distinguished Freud's approach was his insistence on a necessary link whereby the content of the fixed idea explained the dissociation. This left a new problem -- how to explain the patient's fascination with this particular fixed idea. The cases discussed in Studies on Hysteria all seem to support the hypothesis that the fixed ideas were "reminiscences" of the traumatic event which caused the dissociation. Causality became for Freud an Archimedean point outside the morass of neurotic thinking and behavior. By 1895 Janet had already concluded that traumata were not the only causes of hysteria. He was beginning to gravitate to the exhaustion theory as his Archimedean point. In contrast, Freud assumed the existence of traumata and even "found" them in cases where he later had to admit they could not have been. When he could no longer maintain the trauma theory, he proposed a theory of sexual stages. In so doing, he retained the fixed idea as definitive of the patient's neurosis, but abandoned the image of multiple personality. The discontinuity between the idiosyncratic fixed idea and the universal pattern of infantile sexuality is retained in the manifest/latent doctrine: The fixed idea (image, symptom) is always manifest, while its meaning (in the events of infantile life) is always latent.

          Certain passages from his dream book (1900) and letters (cf. Roazen, 1976) show that Freud was not wholly antipathetic to dissociationism. But according to Stepansky (1977), Freud accepted the formulation, ". . . we concur with Binet and the two Janets . . ." only at Breuer's insistence (pp. 28ff., 37). Once the sexual theory was established, dissociation theory became superfluous. Only "reminiscences" remained in the form of the notion of intrapsychic conflict and the tripartite divisions of the topographical and dynamic theories.

          Freud's insistence on the sexual theory may have included a large component of good public relations. It lent the image of psychoanalysis a distinct form as the image of multiple personality had done for dissociationism, and it had certain strengths where the other was weak. For example, it claimed physiological foundation in the reflex arc -- which, according to Miller, Galanter, and Pribram (1960, p. 46) was the only way to be "scientific" in psychology until the 1940s -- and in the notion of dammed-up sexuality. Freud's statement to Jung (Jung, 1961, p. 150) that the sexual doctrine was to be a bulwark "against the black tide of occultism" seems to have been justified in that psychoanalysis has never been weakened by the spiritualistic taint which clung to the image of multiple personality. This may be one reason "Freud and his disciples have abstained from any attempt to reconcile the facts of multiple personality with the Freudian psychology" (McDougall, 1926, p. 523). Finally, Freud's method of listening to everything the patient has to say (even the apparent nonsense which billows forth in "free association"), was a kind of solution to the dilemma which the hypnotists had, wondering whether and when they should believe the patient (cf. Prince, 1929; Sidis, 1902). According to Freud, everything is to be listened to and yet everything is more or less deceptive, for "manifest" symptoms are a compromise with "latent" truth. Certainty comes from the doctrine of interpretation.

          In reality, Breuer and Freud's tribute to French dissociationism simultaneously announced its decline. The image of multiple personality was important to them only because it seemed to explain the effects of "traumata." In taking this approach, they assumed that the "normal" psyche was unified and that "dissociation" is synonymous with "pathology" -- all very much in contrast with the school of dissociationism, on behalf of which Morton Prince (1914) argues:

The dissociated and multiple personalities are not novel and freak phenomena, but are only exaggerations of the normal and due to exaggerations of normal processes, and it is for this reason that they are of interest and importance. For, being exaggerations, they accentuate and bring out into high relief certain tendencies and functional mechanisms which belong to normal conditions and they differentiate mental processes one from another, which normally are not so easily recognized. (p. 562)

Secondly, Breuer and Freud imposed a causal schema upon dissociationism's essentially teleological image of complex formation. But more importantly than this, the development of Freud's thought generated a new image of the psyche. In dispersing the alleged causal moment over the several years of infantile sexual development, Freud replaced a spatial metaphor (the "co-conscious" subpersonalities of dissociationism) with a temporal metaphor (the sexual stages).

Jung: Dissociation and the Archetypes

          The dissociationism of a hundred years ago, under the leadership of Pierre Janet, is what I refer to as Jung's French heritage. When we keep it in focus, Jung's career very much deserves the label he liked to give it, Complex Psychology, and agrees with his sense of history (Jung, 1935a): "My own course of development was influenced primarily by the French school and later by Wundt's psychology. Later, in 1906, I made contact with Freud, only to part company with him in 1913" (par. 1737). Even Jungians have read this with skepticism. It sounds too much like an attempt to diminish Freud's role in Jung's development, to deny that he was ever (outside of Freud's imagination) the crown prince of psychoanalysis. Similarly his remark in the foreword to the second Swiss edition (1924) of Symbols of Transformation (1911), "my respected and fatherly friend, the late Théodore Flournoy," may be read as an attempt to declare that he had never been Freud's "son," having always been Flournoy's. However, Barbara Hannah (1976) tells us that Jung often traveled to Geneva to visit Flournoy during the years immediately after his break with Freud and that he found his French-speaking countryman a much more compatible conversationalist (p. 98).

          Furthermore, two of Jung's important early publications (1902, 1911) were modeled on or organized around works of Flournoy. That the first of these (On the Psychology and Pathology of So-Called Occult Phenomena) is often dismissed with a scratch of the head reveals how little the historical situation at the turn of the century is appreciated. Psychology and spiritualism were intertwined. Societies for psychical research were applying dissociation theories to parapsychology. Charcot had studied the phenomena of faith cures at Lourdes. Janet (1898) had integrated parapsychological phenomena in his study of dissociation and had depicted psychotherapy as having gradually differentiated itself from religious practices and beliefs (1919). Furthermore, the model for Jung's dissertation was Flournoy's controversial book, From India to the Planet Mars, a study of the Geneva medium, Hélène Smith, who claimed to relive former lives while in trance: one as a queen in fifteenth century India and the other as an important lady on Mars.

          This book, more than any other, claimed the phenomena of spiritualism as legitimate territory for effective psychological research. Flournoy, in a five-year-long virtuoso performance as psychologist and detective, had managed to track down all the extravagant claims of the medium and demonstrate their probable origins in cryptomnesias. Furthermore, by studying the content of Mlle. Smith's several "romances," Flournoy determined that Indian, Martian, Arabian, and European "incarnations" were all variations on a single theme, guided by the same complex. Although Jung's Occult Phenomena diverges from Janetian skepticism over the content of the fixed ideas, it is very much in harmony with Flournoy's brand of dissociationism and refers to India to Mars several times. Apparently lacking the time or patience to reveal a comprehensive system of cryptomnesias in his medium, Frâulein SW, Jung strenuously asserts the importance of this unconscious device and includes, quite gratuitously, a passage from Nietzsche's Zarathustra side by side with an almost identical passage from Kerner's Blâtter aus Prevorst. It is a stunning discovery of cryptomnesia in a great writer, but has little directly to do with Frâulein SW, in whom Jung detected influence from Kerner's more famous work, The Seeress of Prevorst.

          The heart of Jung's thesis, however, is that SW's mediumistic fantasies played an important function in the girl's adolescent development. The semisomnambulic figure of Ivenes appeared to be her "healthy personality" (a little like Félida X's "number two"), a kind of trial project for what she might become in twenty years' time. "One cannot say that she deludes herself onto the higher state, rather she dreams herself into it." This recognition of a teleological component in fantasy, while foreign to Freud, had indeed been recognized by Paulhan, Janet, and Flournoy. However, Jung went further than they dared (or wanted) to go, in speculating that his own case may not have been unique, and that the classic cases of multiple personality ought to be reinterpreted in its light.

It is therefore conceivable that the phenomena of double consciousness are simply new character formations, or attempts of the future personality to break through. . . . In view of the difficulties that oppose the future character, the somnambulisms have an eminently teleological significance, in that they give the individual who would otherwise inevitably succumb, the means of victory. (par. 136)

          After his high-spirited dissertation, Jung immersed himself in a prolonged empirical study of the fixed ideas, or complexes, as he preferred to call them. The great mass of data assembled in the first volume of his Word Association Studies (1906) demonstrated that the component memories, ideas, and images of a complex, all sharing a distinct emotional tone, could be identified by such objective means as measuring the time lapsed between administration of a stimulus word and the subject's response. Jung believed and Freud seems to have accepted that these studies provided "empirical demonstration" of the truth of psychoanalytic theory, but the careful reader discovers only the loosest connection between these articles and the contemporary works of Freud. What the studies do demonstrate is that each individual's psychic life arranges itself into an idiosyncratic group of complexes, largely reflective of significant events and periods of his life. The emotional "tone" of a complex invariably brings about hesitations and "mistakes" in the style of what Freud called "the psychopathology of everyday life." But there is nothing to indicate that sexuality determines all complexes or lurks "latently" behind the "manifest" responses of the patient. Rather Jung takes the responses quite literally. The complexes do, very often, conceal closely guarded secrets, but the association experiment reveals them directly without need for such psychoanalytic interpretive doctrines as condensation, displacement, and the like. The image guiding Jung's thought is that of multiple, simultaneously active, subpersonalities. Jung is thinking spatially (centers of aggregation) while Freud thinks temporally (sexual stages), teleologically rather than causally.

          The same may be said for the monograph on schizophrenia, published the following year (1907), where Jung demonstrates in great detail that the word-salad of a hopelessly deteriorated woman makes sense, being organized by complexes. In interpreting the material, he again employs the notion, shared by Flournoy and Freud, that all fantasies are meaningful and bear close investigation of their content, but eschews the rigorous detective work characteristic of psychoanalysis. He does allude to the manifest/latent theory of Freud: "We see only the dream-image but not the thought-complex behind it" (par. 256). But he does not at all mean by this phrase what Freud means by the distinction dream image/unconscious thought. Rather Jung's meaning is much closer to the Janet of L'automatisme, where conscious, discursive thinking is opposed to the stereotypy of the subconscious "automatism." The passage in Jung (1907) continues:

. . . the patient takes her dream products as real and claims that they are reality. She acts just as we do in dreams, when we are no longer capable of distinguishing between logical and analogical connections; . . . she speaks as if she were still in the dream, she is involved in the automatic machinery, with the result that all logical reproduction naturally ceases. (par. 256, emphasis added)

This language from the strict dissociationist Janet may be found side by side with the Janetian language of Obsessions (1903): exhaustion, the lowering of psychological tension (abaissement), sentiments of incompleteness, and so on.

          The abundance of such evidence inclines me to suspect that in 1907 Jung was reading Freud with Janetian, or French dissociationist, eyes. The suspicion is supported by the argument of the first chapter of the book, where Jung depicts Freud as having continued the work of Janet and the French school. French psychology determined the dissociable nature of the psyche; Freud's contribution was to recognize the purpose (!) of dissociation, namely "to find out what is not available in reality" (par. 60-71). Here, Jung refers to Freud's writing in Studies on Hysteria (1895), when Freud had not yet distinguished himself decisively from French dissociationism. The section contains no references to later works of Freud.

          Jung's next major publication was the monumental and labyrinthine Symbols of Transformation (1911) which resulted in his break with Freud. The precipitating reason for the break appears to be that, through the mythological preoccupations of the book, Jung finally and irrevocably talked himself out of the psychoanalytic doctrine of incest. Before the crucial second (and last) installment of the book appeared, Jung had already accepted an invitation from Fordham University in New York to give a series of lectures. He used these (1912) to redefine his relationship to psychoanalysis. He argues that oedipal issues in themselves cannot account for neurosis; for everyone has an oedipus complex, yet not everyone is neurotic. Only those predisposed to neurosis run aground on the oedipal shoals. "Drawing back from certain tasks cannot be explained by saying that man prefers the incestuous relationship, rather he falls back into it because he shuns exertion" (par. 470). Neurosis is due to an innate sensitiveness or weakness (par. 390-401). Jung becomes an exponent of Janet's theory of psychic exhaustion. Having rejected the causal, temporal foundations of psychoanalysis, he falls back on the logic of the image which has guided him all along.

          In succeeding years, Jung regularly reminds his audience of the complex (dissociation) theory. He writes (1924): "The psychic double is a commoner phenomenon than one would expect, although it seldom reaches a degree of intensity that would entitle one to speak of a `double personality' " (par. 227); he recommends (1939) the writings of Janet, Flournoy, Prince, and others so that his readers will understand the image of multiple personality and the premises on which he is working (par. 490); he traces (1951b) his own psychological heritage from Paracelsus through Mesmer, Charcot, Janet, and Freud (par. 231); and he cites (1954) cases of double personality, automatisme ambulatoire, and the researches of Janet to illustrate what the "complexes" are (par. 383). He gives the fullest description of a complex in his Tavistock Lectures (1935b):

Complexes are autonomous groups of associations that have a tendency to move by themselves, to live their own life apart from our intentions. I hold that our personal unconscious as well as the collective unconscious, consists of an indefinite, because unknown, number of complexes or fragment personalities. (par. 151)

In the same lecture, Jung enumerates the following characteristics of a complex: (1) it has a sort of body with its own physiology so that it can upset the stomach, breathing, heart; (2) it has its own will power and intentions so that it can disturb a train of thought or a course of action just as another human being can do; (3) it is in principle no different from the ego which is itself a complex; (4) it becomes dramatized in our dreams, poetry, and drama; (5) it becomes visible and audible in hallucinations; and (6) it completely victimizes the personality in insanity.

          Finally, the doctrine of the archetypes appears in Jung's work as the completion of the complex theory, its first indications appearing already in 1911. Flournoy had published a fifteen-page pamphlet of dreams and visions from a "Miss Frank Miller," an American student, who had added her own cursory detective work, tracking the origins of the fantasies back to her own memories -- somewhat in the style of Flournoy's India to Mars. Jung's (1911) interpretation of the pamphlet is a five hundred page journey through world mythology which, it might be said, turns Flournoy "on his head." Synopsis of the central argument may be given without reference to anything foreign to the complex theory as found in the word association studies. Led by Miss Miller's emotionally charged associations, Jung investigates Cyrano de Bergerac and The Song of Hiawatha (among other sources), to learn more about the dreamer's complex which shows a propensity for one romantic death after another and finally as the fantasy figure, Chiwantopel, is understood to have departed for "ten thousand moons," until he and the one woman in all creation who can appreciate him (Miss Miller) will finally meet. In Jung's view, this complex was the one psychic factor which might have been able to pull Miss Miller out of her dreamy adolescence and into effective contact with the world. Its emphatic death means that it was about to sink so far from consciousness that schizophrenia could be the only result. Jung's diagnosis proved correct, and Miss Miller's American psychiatrist wrote to say that personal acquaintance with his patient had not taught him more about her than had Jung's book (Jung, 1911, p. xxviii).

          But Jung's method of analysis goes beyond a purely French-school complex theory. He did not limit himself to the associative material mentioned by the dreamer herself, but concerned himself with mythological and literary parallels with which she may have been entirely ignorant. This is the beginning of the conceptualization which eventually acquires the name "archetype" (Jung 1919).

          There are at least six partly complementary, partly contradictory, meanings of archetype in Jung's writings. In the first place, used as a substantive, archetype properly refers to the hypothesized "source" of typical images. It is not itself an object of experience, but is the ultimate form-giving principle in human experience. Although he frequently deplores the misunderstandings by which readers have come to believe that archetypes are inborn images, in fact Jung himself contributes to this confusion by using archetype in a second sense to refer to typical images, themselves. Thus, for instance, he writes of the "mother archetype," the "child archetype," or the "trickster archetype" in which mythological patterns are cited in order to elucidate the psychology of an individual.

          In a third sense, archetype may be called the teleological component in instinct. Jung (1919) provides the following parallel definitions:

Instincts are typical modes of action, and wherever we meet with uniform and regularly recurring modes of action and reaction we are dealing with instinct, no matter whether it is associated with a conscious motive or not. (par. 273)

Archetypes are typical modes of apprehension, and wherever we meet with uniform and regularly recurring modes of apprehension we are dealing with an archetype, no matter whether its mythological character is recognized or not. (par. 280)

          Fourth, the archetype may be discussed as a dynamic/structural component of the psyche, somewhat analogously as Freud speaks of id, ego, and superego. In this vein, Jung speaks of precisely five "archetypes": ego, persona, shadow, anima or animus, and self. Each has its own function within the psyche as a whole: discrimination and conscious making (ego); adaptation to the social world (persona); dissociation and integration of the repressed (shadow); encounter with and transformation of the "other," both without and within, both fleshly and spiritual (anima or animus); guidance of psychological development toward "wholeness" or "individuation" (self) (Jung 1951a, pp. 3-35).

          Fifth, the archetypal may designate a quality of experience, alternatively described as powerful, fascinating, or "numinous." Homans (1979) relies heavily on this meaning of archetype in his Kohutian interpretation of Jung.

          Finally, a sixth meaning of archetype may be discovered insofar as the archetype is a complex, but a typical one. I refer primarily to this meaning in discussing the French roots of Jung's split with Freud. Because he had discerned something typical in Miss Miller's romantic hero complex, Jung was emboldened to explicate it through two of his own favorite literary works, Goethe's Faust and Nietzsche's Zarathustra. Having read these classics in his youth, Jung recognized in each of them a documentation of the experience of having a second personality, ageless, remote from the everyday world, but close to nature. He called this his "No. 2" personality, and recognized Faust as Goethe's "No. 2" and Zarathustra as Nietzsche's "No. 2" (Jung, 1961, p. 102). Thus it is apparent why Faust and Zarathustra play such important roles in the interpretation of the Miller fantasies. Christian de Neuvillette (from Cyrano) and Chiwantopel are two of the symbols by which Miller's "No. 2" shows himself; and Jung "dreams himself into" her mentality (to use the language of Jung 1902) by repeated appeal to the two paradigms for his own "No. 2."

          What appears here, in nuce, is an extension of dissociationism to make possible a new theoretical construct and a new approach to therapy. Janet's exhaustion theory had enabled him to retain his physician's persona and "apply" treatments, such as hypnotic alterations of the patient's imagery and tasks to help recover memories.

My treatment of the patient was something more than a suggestion; it was an excitation. . . . I demand from Irène attention and efforts; I insist that she shall have an increasingly clear consciousness of her feelings. All these things are means for enhancing the nervous and mental tension, for obtaining, if you like to phrase it in that way, the functioning of the higher centers. . . . I often had to scold her, to discover the directions in which she was impressionable, to shake her morally in various ways, in order to "buck her up" to make her rediscover memories and actions. (Janet, 1919, p. 848, citing an article of his own from 1904)

Freud's theory of sexual stages leads to an entirely different model. Despite the fact that most psychoanalysts have first been trained as physicians, the theory and treatment process of interpretation require that the analyst relinquish the persona of the physician as detached agent and respond to the ongoing drama of relationship between analyst and analysand (transference/countertransference). The relationship becomes a "transference neurosis" to be conquered by aiding the analysand in getting "insight" into the "repetition compulsion." The analyst, however, must never lose his or her position as analyst/interpreter. The analyst straddles the fence of involvement, accepting the analysand's projections (one foot inside the relationship) but relentlessly interpreting them (one foot outside the relationship).

          Jung relinquishes his physician's persona even more radically than does Freud. Indeed, interpretation is no longer even of primary importance, particularly the kind of interpretation which reduces phenomena to their alleged causes.

In the transference all kinds of infantile fantasies are projected. They must be cauterized, i.e., resolved by reductive analysis, and this is generally known as "resolving the transference." Thereby the energy is again released from an unserviceable form, and again we are faced with the problem of disposability. Once more we shall put our trust in nature, hoping that, even before it is sought, an object will have been chosen which will provide a favourable gradient. (Jung, 1917, par. 96)

This passage, taken from another transition essay of Jung's, when he was trying to define himself in contrast to Freud and Adler, articulates what might be called a dual theory of interpretation. "Reductive interpretation" in the style of Freud or Adler is to be used to break through the vicious circle of the neurosis. After this, the workings of "nature" are to be respected, and the analyst "interprets" only in the sense of commenting on and helping to make conscious a process already moving toward maturity or "individuation." Even "the resistance" is "part of nature" and to be "respected." Jung (1937) describes one spectacular and successful case in which he understood and was able to interpret nothing at all of the patient's dreams. In his Psychology of the Transference (1946), he interprets a series of alchemical woodcuts in which a queen and king (the analyst's anima and the analysand's animus) dissolve together in the alchemical bath. This is the symbolic equivalent of his "dreaming himself into" Miss Miller's incipient schizophrenia.

          Whereas the dissociation theory of the French school described purely idiosyncratic splitting, Jung begins to argue in Symbols of Transformation (1911) that there are typically human patterns discernable in these splits. Thus the employment of Goethe's Faust as a bridge between Miss Miller's "No. 2" and his own "No. 2." Jung (1911) cites a letter of the historian Jacob Burckhardt to a student:

What you are destined to discover in Faust, you will have to discover intuitively . . . Faust is a genuine myth, i.e., a great primordial image, in which everyman has to discover his own being and destiny in his own way. (p. 32, n. 45)

Just as every person discovers his own being in the primordial image (later called archetype) so the analyst discovers the being of the analysand -- that is, a partially lived possibility in himself.

          The same may be said of the figure of Zarathustra in Nietzsche's work, but Jung had special hopes for this archetypal figure. He tells us in his ten volume unpublished seminar on Zarathustra (1934-1939) that he had studied Nietzsche's book carefully while on military duty in World War 1, hoping to find evidence for what an "autonomous complex" of such central importance could do. Coming after this "Nekyia" or undersea journey, as he calls it, (or his "creative illness" as Ellenberger, 1968, calls it) this study of Zarathustra had profound personal meaning for Jung. But more than that, it constitutes his own search for a Kernkomplex, as ten years earlier Freud (Freud & Jung, 1908) had described his metapsychological search for an Archimedean point by which the multitude of individuals could be understood against a universal pattern.


          The three metapsychologies (oedipal, archetypal, and economic) epitomize relations between psychoanalysis, analytical psychology, and psychological analysis. All three know something about the patient in advance: Freud that psychosexual development is disturbed; Janet that there is something wrong with the availability and tension of psychic energy; and Jung that a human pattern will manifest itself which at sometime or other has been delineated in mythology. All three approaches appeal, therefore, to some aspect of the universally human in order to understand the individual. But whereas Janet's "metapsychology" enables him to retain his physician's persona and treat the patient as a patient, Jung follows Freud in relinquishing that persona in order to strike a partnership with the client whereby the two jointly investigate the analysand's psyche. On the other hand, Freud's metapsychology necessitates discarding everything the client dreams and says as mere husk, concealing the sexual Kernkomplex, while Jung follows Janet in believing the analysand and accepting the client's world view as the primary given. Regarding the complexes, tendencies, or fixed ideas, Janet abandons their contents, considering only the economics of their arousal and discharge while Jung follows Freud in devoting nearly all of his attention to the investigation and analysis of these contents. On the other hand, Freud's metapsychology admits of only one conflict pattern (the oedipal) and only one stereotyped splitting (conscious/unconscious/preconscious censor or ego/id/super ego) whereas Jung and Janet agree that each psyche splits in its own idiosyncratic manner.

          The doctrine of the archetypes enables Jung to walk this narrow ridge, availing himself of the advantages of both schools. First of all, it appeals to the universally human ("collective") to attain interpretative distance from the individual. Second, because it can only be employed upon psychic contents, it leaves the analyst entirely at the service of the analysand. The analyst can only follow or accompany the analysand into the wilderness of the latter's psyche. Third, because the number and configuration of the archetypes has been deliberately left indefinite, the doctrine enables a constantly shifting flexibility whereby any dissociated condition may be explicated by models continuously in a state of redefinition. Fourth, as a consequence of this flexibility, the psychologist who thinks archetypally can afford to take the analysand at his word and in his own world, as there is no necessity to translate the "manifest" into some therapeutic formulation of the "latent." Fifth, Jung remains closer to the "French school" than even Janet, as Janet forsakes the uniqueness of the fixed idea in order to speak of its economics.

          Finally, the doctrine of the archetypes formulates the means and method by which the analyst relates "analytically" to the analysand. On the basis of these universal patterns, the analyst is able to "dream himself into" the condition of the analysand. The analyst uses his or her own dissociability to understand that of the client. Janet did not come close to this insight. Freud approached it in his doctrine of the transference, but there an oedipal parent-child relationship is expected, where the analyst is the senior figure. In archetypal psychology, however, the analyst enters the alchemical bath with the analysand: both are wounded, both are healers, and both are transformed.

          Solve et coagula (dissolve and coagulate), the motto of alchemy, has the psychological significance of "dissociate and integrate." Although it is beyond the scope of this paper to discuss the role of dissociationism in Jung's alchemical studies, their very existence demonstrates two important facts about dissociationism. The French hypnotists by no means invented dissociationism; they merely recognized and explicated a universal human possibility which had been under discussion symbolically and in projected form for centuries. Also, Jung's development of the theory of the archetypes does not imply that he had "transcended" dissociationism or lost interest in the complex theory. Rather, what has been transcended is the almost Cartesian concern with the mind's shuffling of ideas. Like psychoanalysis, Jungian psychology is a "praxis" of relationship, but it is the archetypal form of dissociationism, while psychoanalysis represents an alternative to dissociationism. As Shoenberg (1975) has pointed out, Freud's true adversary was never Adler or Jung, but has always been Janet.


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