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In analytical psychology, the feminine principle as represented in the male unconscious, an archetype (2) forming part of the collective unconscious, representing the feminine aspect of human nature, characterized by imagination, fantasy, and play, manifesting itself in personified form in dreams and fantasies, and acting as a psychopomp connecting the ego and the unconscious. As Carl Gustav Jung (1875–1961) described it: ‘Every man carries with him the eternal image of woman, not the image of this or that particular woman, but a definitive feminine image. This image is fundamentally unconscious, an hereditary factor of primordial origin engraved in the living organic system of the man, an imprint or “archetype” of all the ancestral experiences of the female, a deposit, as it were, of all the impressions ever made by woman’ (Collected Works, 17, paragraph 338). See also imago (1), syzygy. Compare animus (3). [From Latin anima air, breath, or spirit]

Subjects: Psychology.

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