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Matter and spirit: the unconscious in Carl Gustav Carus's psychology (1779-1868)



Matter and spirit: the unconscious in Carl Gustav Carus's psychology (1779-1868)



Dynamis 17: 213-237



Carl Gustav Carus, one of the originators of a doctrine centered on the unconscious, is an interesting figure from current viewpoints. The doctrine he espoused was psychological, but in addition, the author sought foundations for his thinking in the biological knowledge of his time. The unconscious that Carus postulated was simultaneously biological, material and psychological in nature. Thus the history of psychism--the history of the soul--was related with the individual's and the species's biological history. From this perspective the unconscious was recognized as an indispensable element of rational thought. This theory, which recalls in many aspects that of C.G. Jung, made possible the medical study of psychic life and the revaluation of unconscious factors of psychism which were usually denigrated by modern anthropologists and moralists.

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Accession: 046631569

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PMID: 11623549


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