A Midsummer Night's Dream

1875 Words8 Pages

Jungian criticism explores how Carl Jung’s psychology can be applied to literature. Carl Jung’s fascination with psychology began while he was at school studying medicine. Here, he developed another interest involving spiritual phenomena. Upon further study, Jung decided to go into psychiatry because he felt that it tied his two interests together. Over the years, Jung developed many different theories in this field. Jung’s greatest theory was the collective mind. Jung said that the mind was composed of three parts: the conscious mind, the collective unconscious, and the personal unconscious. Jung theorized that these three parts formed the collective mind. He believed the collective mind “was a reservoir of all the experience and knowledge …show more content…

They fulfill the archetypes of the anima and animus through their interactions and represent the theme of love in the play. When Hermia’s desire to marry Lysander is rejected by her father, she is so upset that her cheeks are pale and there is a “tempest [in] [her] eyes” (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Act 1, Scene 1, line 135). Her reaction to this news displays her anima traits of being sensitive and temperamental. Lysander,however, illustrates his animus traits. Instead of becoming emotional and depressed, Lysander takes action by using critical thinking, and is assertive about his desire to marry Hermia. He creates the plan to marry at his aunt’s house where, “the sharp Athenian law cannot pursue [them]...” (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Act 1,Scene 2, lines 166-167). Helena also displays her anima traits through her pursuit of Demetrius. She wants to be in his presence so badly that she is willing to let him, “spurn [her] [or even] strike [her]’ (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Act 2, Scene 1, line 213) as long as she gets to follow after him. Her anima traits are …show more content…

She also shows passivity as she allows Demetrius to guide her actions, and treat her so terribly without refuting him. Demetrius displays his animus traits in his response to Helena’s love. He is assertive and decisive. He has decided to pursue Hermia and refuses to relinquish that desire. Demetrius is assertive regarding this desire and forcefully rejects Helena’s love and tells her to “follow [him] no more” (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Act 2, Scene 1, line 202). While the characters have shown their more dominant characteristics in the earlier scenes of the play, in act three, scene 2, the characters display their more minor traits. Hermia and Helena exhibit their animus characteristics while Lysander and Demetrius exhibit their anima traits. As Helena and Hermia fight, they become more assertive and active regarding their thoughts and desires. They hurl insults at each other and threaten to hurt each other. Hermia actually threatens that “[her] nails can reach unto

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