Archetypes of Mythology. Book by Stefan Stenudd.

Archetypes of Mythology

Jungian Theories on Myth and Religion Examined

Carl G. Jung broke with Sigmund Freud to develop his own form of analytical psychology, based on the ideas of the archetypes and the collective unconscious. He also found those concepts exhibited in myth and religion.

       Jung got a number of followers, some quite illustrious, such as Joseph Campbell and recently Jordan B. Peterson.

       This book presents and critically examines the imaginative theories of Jung and the Jungians about mythology and religion, as expressed in their own texts. Although discredited within psychology, these ideas have had a considerable influence on art, literature, New Age esotericism, and movie-making. Still, they can and should be questioned.

Stefan Stenudd is a Swedish author and historian of ideas. Within the history of ideas he researches thought patterns in creation myths, as well as theories about mythology through history.

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Archetypes of Mythology. Book by Stefan Stenudd.


(Excerpts from the book)

This is my second book on so-called depth psychology perspectives on mythology and religion. The first one was about how Sigmund Freud and his followers tackled the subjects, and this one is about the thoughts of Carl G. Jung and those who have applied his theories. Initially, it was to be one book, but it swelled beyond reasonable size, so I decided to divide it into two.

       Also, it made sense regarding the content. The Freudian and the Jungian views differ considerably and profoundly. Therefore, each tradition is better to treat separately, for the sake of clarity and consistency.

( - - - )

       Psychology was still very much limited to speculation and little was proven by hard empirical facts, during the first few decades of psychoanalysis. Freud was the father of this emerging science, and therefore his paradigm was the foundation on which his followers built their understanding.

       That changed when Carl G. Jung broke free and developed his own paradigm, which was quite different and deviated increasingly as he continued to develop it. He was quite peripheral at first. Freud dominated the scene. But by time, Jung’s alternative attracted more and more attention, though not primarily from psychologists and psychiatrists. Instead, he was increasingly read and respected by anthropologists, mythologists, authors, artists, and the general public.

       In accordance with the variety of his audience, those who picked up on his ideas in their own writing were quite a diverse group. Many were not even primarily interested in psychological aspects, but focused on the myths and Jung’s ideas as tools to explore them.

       That had the distinct benefit of the Jungian line being much less constrained and controlled than that of the Freudians. It is strikingly obvious in the Jungian texts. They dare to deviate considerably from Jung, even when praising him as their source and guiding light. There is something about Jung’s thoughts that invites creativity instead of conformity. He is used as a trampoline by which to reach new heights and perspectives, and not at all a standard to obediently repeat.

       This is definitely a winning recipe, indicating that Jung will remain much longer and with more appreciation than Freud — at least regarding speculations about mythology and religion. As for therapeutical benefits, both are probably going to be of diminishing value, until they fade away completely. They just don’t have the track record to be sustainable.


Introduction 7
Carl G. Jung 21
Jungians 210
Erich Neumann 212
Károly Kerényi 224
Joseph L. Henderson 229
Joseph Campbell 238
Mircea Eliade 287
Marie-Louise von Franz 300
Charles H. Long 318
James Hillman 330
Anthony Stevens 357
David Adams Leeming 395
Jordan B. Peterson 414
Literature 469

Archetypes of Mythology
Mythology by
Arriba, 2022
Paperback, 482 pages
ISBN 978-91-7894-002-8

Myths of Creation


Creation Myths: Emergence and Meanings
Psychoanalysis of Myth: Freud and Jung
Jungian Theories on Myth and Religion
Archetypes of Mythology - the book
Psychoanalysis of Mythology - the book
Ideas and Learning
Cosmos of the Ancients
Life Energy Encyclopedia

On my Creation Myths website:

Creation Myths Around the World
The Logics of Myth
Theories through History about Myth and Fable
Genesis 1: The First Creation of the Bible
Enuma Elish, Babylonian Creation
The Paradox of Creation: Rig Veda 10:129
Xingu Creation
Archetypes in Myth

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My Other Websites

Myths in general and myths of creation in particular.

The wisdom of Taoism and the Tao Te Ching, its ancient source.

An encyclopedia of life energy concepts around the world.

Qi (also spelled chi or ki) explained, with exercises to increase it.

The ancient Chinese system of divination and free online reading.

Tarot card meanings in divination and a free online spread.

The complete horoscope chart and how to read it.








Stefan Stenudd

Stefan Stenudd

About me
I'm a Swedish author of fiction and non-fiction books in both English and Swedish. I'm also an artist, a historian of ideas, and a 7 dan Aikikai Shihan aikido instructor. Click the header to read my full bio.