The podcast reviewed here is the 15th in John Bett’s series on Jungian Analytic Psychology and freely available (at the time of writing) here. In this episode, Betts continues the analysis of fairy tales. He looks at the argument that characters are superficially described in fairy tales and supports this convincingly with examples. He also discusses the efficient use of objects within the fairy tales. Indeed it seems reasonable to say that the fairy tale fits into a genre with circumscribed rules for character and narrative development and he takes the comparison of fairy tales and legends discussed in the previous episode one step further. At first, it might seem as though there is little relationship between the analysis of fairy tales and psychotherapy! However Betts argues elegantly for how the fairy tale is an ‘individuation simulator’ meaning that it is an example of the individuation process with our without obstacles. Furthermore he argues that the motifs that can be used in the interpretation of dreams. Betts then reads one of the Grimm’s Fairy Tales – ‘The Nixie of the Mill Pond’ leaving the listener to interpret this. In listening to this episode, I thought that this might not just be applicable to fairy tales but to other aspects of culture including films and novels and indeed Betts has discussed the analysis of films briefly in previous episodes.
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