Jung and the Epic of Transformation  Volume 1

Releasing June 1
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Jung and the Epic of Transformation 
Volume 1, Wolfram von Eschenbach’s “Parzival” and the Grail as Transformation
What have the Middle Ages got to do with us? For Jung, it seems, quite a lot; after all, he tells us: “I must catch up with a piece of the Middle Ages — within myself,” adding: “We have only finished the Middle Ages — of others.” 

In Wolfram von Eschenbach’s “Parzival” and the Grail as Transformation, Paul Bishop considers the significance for Jung of a masterpiece of medieval German literature, and a major work in the tradition of the legendary Holy Grail. Wolfram’s Parzival epic depicts a three-fold quest: for the hero’s identity, for vröude (“joy”), and for the mysterious Grail. In the course of this quest, Parzival himself is transformed from a fool into the lord of the Grail, and the power of the Grail brings about a collective transformation as well.

This is the first volume in a series of books, examining key texts in German literature and thought that were, in Jung’s own estimation or by scholarly consent, highly influential on his thinking. The project of Jung and the Epic of Transformation consists of four titles, sequentially arranged to explore great works from a Jungian perspective and in turn to highlight their importance for interpreting The Red Book.


Table of Contents
  • List of Abbreviations
  • Grail Studies (in chronological order) 
  • Parzival/Parsifal Studies (in chronological order)
  • Editions cited
  • Acknowledgements
  • Preface: The Grail and Arthurian Legend
  • Chapter 1 An Introduction to Epic
  • Chapter 2 Wolfram’s Parzival
  • Chapter 3 Jung and the Grail Myth: Analytical Psychology as a New Form of Quest for Transformation
  • Bibliography

Also from Paul Bishop
Reading Goethe at Midlife: 
Ancient Wisdom, German Classicism & Jung
Volume 3 of the Zürich Lecture Series
Reading Goethe at Midlife reveals the remarkable symmetry between the ideas of Jung and Goethe. Jung’s analysis of the stages of life, and his advice to heed the “call of the self,” are brought into the conjunction with Goethe’s emphasis on the importance of hope, showing an underlying continuity of thought and relevance from ancient wisdom, via German classicism to analytical psychology.

About the Author
Paul Bishop is William Jacks Chair of Modern Languages at the University of Glasgow. His research is focused on the intellectual background to psychoanalysis and analytical psychology. 
His books include Reading Goethe at Midlife: Ancient Wisdom, German Classicism & Jung (2011; 2nd edn., 2020), On the Blissful Islands with Nietzsche & Jung: In the Shadow of the Superman (2017), and Reading Plato through Jung: Why must the Third become the Fourth? (2022). 
The four volumes of Jung and the Epic of Transformation draw on his experience over three decades of researching, teaching, and enjoying Jung’s works and their intellectual sources.

Download the Chiron Catalog
for a Complete Listing of Titles