Carl G. Jung's Archetypes In The Lion King

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Lion King. The analysis will be based on Carl G. Jung’s archetypes, and two of them will be applied to Simba. The Lion King was chosen to be the topic of this essay because of the journey that Simba has to go through to become a mature lion, ready to watch over Pride Rock, a part of Africa that his father once ruled. Simba’s journey exemplifies the archetypes that I have chosen to discuss, with every moment in the movie being a crucial part of Simba’s development. Additionally, the text gives a thorough description of the archetypes applied, and will be explored through Simba’s story. My analysis will be concrete and will give specific moments in the movie that help give an image to the archetype. However, other archetypes can be applied to…show more content…
Carl Jung, a psychotherapist and founder of analytical psychology has discovered that these personality types are from within the unconscious and are patterns that shape our perceptions. These patterns are called “archetypes”. Jung explains that these archetypes cannot be directly experienced, but can be culturally conditioned and manifested in images and symbols (McManus). Application of archetypes are not limited to only humans, but can be represented by fictional characters in movies and books. In The Lion King, there are many archetypal images and symbols that are represented by the animals. The movie explores the life of a lion, whose future is to be king, but is tricked by his own uncle, stealing the kingdom from him. The film follows the lion’s struggles of finding his identity and becoming the rightful ruler of Pride Rock. Specifically, I will apply two archetypes to Simba, that main protagonist of the film. I believe that The Orphan and The Warrior archetypes are best representable by Simba because of the many moments in the movie where Simba embodies the description of the…show more content…
The Warrior archetype is the most obvious because of his determination to fight for his justice. The Orphan archetype, although still shown in Simba’s psyche, isn’t as prominent at the end of the movie. The Warrior archetype has taken over, giving the new mature lion a sense of stoicism. Simba is the perfect image to explain the characteristics of The Warrior and The Orphan. Some trouble I ran into while trying to analyze Simba was applying Jung’s definition of archetypes to Simba himself. Because this is a children’s animated film, the character had no “collective unconscious”, breaking the definition of “archetypes” that Jung proposed. Although archetypes can be fit into many beings, there could have been many archetypes that Simba could have represented. However, I used my judgement to critique Simba’s personality and applied the archetypes I saw were best represented by him. There is a difficulty in analyzing an animated character, especially because there is only a limited amount of information that can be taken from Simba. Simba only grows as much as the designers want him to grow, so rather than diving into Simba’s mind, he can only be analyzed at face-value. However, we can also look at how other characters influence Simba to demonstrate the archetypes. For example, what aspects of Timon and Pumbaa helped emphasize Simba’s representation of The Orphan or The Warrior? Without

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