February 19-20, 1988: James L. Jarrett

Lecture: Jung put off the reading of Nietzsche for years, apprehensive lest he and Nietzsche prove frighteningly alike. Finally, Jung got up his courage in his medical school days and plunged in. It was, he said, “a tremendous experience.” In 1934 he began a five-year seminar devoted to a psychological commentary on Thus Spoke Zarathustra; now he as able to analyze this complex man in detail, exposing alike his undoubted genius and the tendencies toward inflation that foreshadowed his psychic collapse at the age of forty-four. This lecture will reveal important respects in which Nietzsche was a pioneer in “the discovery of the Unconscious”, with particular reference to affinities between his philosophy and Jungian psychology.

Workshop: This workshop will begin with a fairly extensive exposition of Nietzsche’s principal philosophical and psychological ideas (as probably less well known to most participants than those of Jung). Attention will then focus upon Thus Spoke Zarathustra, considered by Nietzsche and many others the chief jewel in his crown. Several of Jung’s lectures, complete with discussion by the original group, will be examined in detail, particular notice being paid to the central topic of the seminar, the relation of ego to Self. Finally, Personality Types will come in for discussion, with emphasis upon the Intuitive, a function highly developed in both Nietzsche and Jung.


James L. Jarrett, Ph.D. is a philosopher in the Graduate School of Education of the University of California, Berkeley, where he regularly teaches a seminar on Freud and Jung. He has published articles in The Journal of Analytical Psychology and other Jungian journals and is the editor of Princeton University Press’s newest and largest book of Jung’s Seminar Notes, Psychological Analysis of Nietzsche’s Zarathustra.

Jung and Nietzsche