Books You Recommend to Others Outside the Field of Depth Psychology

I would love to hear what books have worked well for introducing others to a depth psychological perspective. My own book initiation into the opus of depth would have to be either Hillman and Ventura's "We've Had 100 years of Psychotherapy.." or Bill Plotkin's "Soulcraft."

Those more nature-based wayfarers that I recommend Plotkin to always seem to share a jolt of energy and recognition with me. But more often, I seem to recommend James Hollis, either his "What Matters Most" or "Finding Meaning in the Second Half of Life."

Also, mostly to men (although it is not only a men's anthology) I suggest the poetry collection with excellent chapter essays, "The Rag and Bone Shop," by Bly, Hillman and Meade.

What about you?

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Thanks for your recommendations Mark.  I confess that I've been so focused on Jung himself, for these many years, that I may not be so up-to-date, with regard to recent authors.  I will have to give these titles a look. 

As for me, however, given that there is a rather timeless aspect to the material, and considering that you may also regard Jung as the grandfather, par excellence, to the field, I can't imagine a better introduction to it than Edward Edinger's Ego and Archetype.  This is the book that turned me quickly and decisively from a somewhat Freudian perspective to Jung.  It was published in 1972, I read it first in 1982, and I believe that I've read it six more times since then.  Every time I read it, I find items that I overlooked in prior readings as significant.


Hey Scott, glad to hear of your Ego and Archetype suggestion. I only picked it up a few months ago and am still, with great pleasure, moving  through just the middle of it, a few pages at a time. But my instincts told me this could be one that I will be recommending in the future. So of course quite intrigued to hear that it has been a bit of a touchstone or talisman to dp for you. Now I will need to reading ahead with more focus and interest. I'd like to identify for myself at least, what level of background a newcomer to depth might require to walk through Edinger's tour with reasonable confidence and understanding. Any thoughts, I would be interested to hear.

yours in depth...


What you ask is difficult to gauge Mark.  My first feeling on the matter is that you don't need any prior experience to read Edinger;  he pretty much takes you by the hand.  On the other hand, I have been so steeped in the subject that perhaps what I see as easily understood may not be so.  For example; when Edinger says that "reality is hostile to original wholeness and dismembers it" it may take a bit of intuition to know just what he is talking about.  What Jung, and then Edinger of course, are referring to is called "primary narcissism" by those with a Freudian orientation, but then that's a whole other story isn't it.  I think Wordsworth may have described this process of dismemberment better than anyone in his poem "Intimations of Immortality."

Still, all-in-all, I think with a clear and open mind, Edinger is pretty easy to understand.

I think it quite remarkable that you have recently picked up the book.


Top two other titles on the list of many many others we could recommend...

Edward Whitmont's Symbolic Quest

and of course Memories, Dreams, Reflections

Not familiar with Edward Whitmont's Symbolic Quest. Will have to look it up. Always on the lookout for new books.


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