Book Definition: a reservoir for the instinctive "memories" held by people everywhere, these "memories" tie together countless generations of human history and give us ancient images know as archetypes.


Jung stated in his book Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious (p. 43), “My thesis then, is as follows: in addition to our immediate consciousness, which is of a thoroughly personal nature and which we believe to be the only empirical psyche (even if we tack on the personal unconscious as an appendix), there exists a second psychic system of a collective, universal, and impersonal nature which is identical in all individuals. This collective unconscious does not develop individually but is inherited. It consists of pre-existent forms, the archetypes, which can only become conscious secondarily and which give definite form to certain psychic contents.”

In Your Own Words

  • Collects and organizes personal experiences in a similar way with each member of a particular species.
  • Addition to the unconscious that holds instinctive memories.
  • The memories and concepts that people all around the world share.


Additional Resources