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Masculine Relational Forms

and the Central Archetype: Desire

Jungian analysts Edward Whitmont and Anthony Stevens, following Toni Wolff's lead in naming relational forms, used her schema to distinguish male forms: the Father, the Warrior, the Youth and the Sage. Rachel Fitzgerald joined Phyllis Sherlock in using the Q Sort technique as a psychometric measurement of individual preferences among the four relational forms. Earlier, Sherlock had created a Q Sort for the female types. Sherlock and Fitzgerald used images from an extensive collection at the San Francisco ARAS library to measure individual identification with types.

While the Q Sort's four images were all validly secured, it was of interest to Rachel and Phyllis that the form most difficult to validate was that of the warrior. Possible reasons for this include contemporary ambivalence rising from widespread resistance to the patriotic duty to serve during the Viet Nam War and the gradual emergence of the men's movement. For thoughtful assessments of the new men/old men speculations, see the books listed below. Q Sorts were used in South America with women in the work of the School of Ecofeminist Spirituality and Ethics. The male Q Sorts and image identification were used during workshops with Chilean men. Image responses were recorded indicating the frequency of responses to particular forms.

Since Toni Wolff's initial lecture did not discuss male relational forms or the containing male archetype, Phyllis Sherlock and Rachel Fitzgerald conducted informal inquiries with men asking them to identify what they believed to be the archetypal form of masculinity. Using a blind draw technique with men in Chile, one image consistently appeared, that of a fierce warrior figure guarding an island temple. It is possible to speculate that the defining social function of deep history is the assurance of survival. Since early humans' life span was short, women's adult lives were spent in maternal states of gestation and lactation which generated the survival need for their protection from preditors--a need for guardianship. Over vast sweeps of paleohistory, the archetypal functioning of the Mother and the Guardian may be the gender distinctions most characteristic of the feminine and the masculine. A speculation from traditional imagery points to the correspondence between Mother Earth and Father Sky as planetary divinities.


To the right: Thelonius Monk/the Magician in action, Tom Morello's ballad of masculine devotion suggesting guardianship, Billie Holiday's Fine and Mellow evoking the heritage of slavery transformed into music by the process Deleuze and Guattari name as desiring production and, lastly, a review of the Beatles' contribution to Western musical history.


Bill McKibben, described by Tim Flannery as "the most effective environmental activist of our age", has subtitled his recent book: Eaarth, "making a life on a tough new planet".

Robert Moore and Douglas Gillette Masculine describe relational forms parallel to Wolff's four forms in King Warrior Magician Lover Rediscovering the Archetypes of the Mature Masculine.

Jungian/Spiritual overview of contemporary masculinity: David J. Tacey, Remaking Men and Jung and the New Age.

Susan Faludi's study of a modern social tragedy: The Betrayal of the American Man, Stiffed.

Gary Bobroff's careful study of crop circles for a serious look at the occult world + science today in: Jung, Crop Circles and the Re-Emergence of the Archetypal Feminine.

Shamanic, literary, sociological studies of the masculine: Robert E Ryan, The Strong Eye of Shamanism A Journey into the Caves of Consicousness. Tom Jenks,"Where are the men?" in The San Francisco Library Journal.

Michael Schwalbe, Unlocking the Iron Cage, the Men's Movement, Gender Politics, and American Culture.

An enormously challenging book by Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari: Anti-Oedipus/ Capitalism and Schizophrenia, is an extended philosophical inquiry. We are advised in Michel Foucault's introduction to look at this work as a work of art taking up the question: How does one introduce desire into thought, into discourse, into action? Foucault also calls their work a book of ethics. Deleuze and Guattari write that if desire is repressed it is because every position of desire, no matter how small, is capable of calling into question the established order of a society: not that desire is asocial, on the contrary. But is is explosive...

This video illuminating the continunity of the music of the Beatles to the long stream of European and Indian music was removed from You Tube in January of 2014. This offsite link to Jazz on the Tube will take you to this video. Use the back button in your browser to return to this page.