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(TV Series)

(1959)

Quotes

[latter-day introduction]

Joan Bakewell: Carl Gustav Jung was 84 years old when he was interviewed for the BBC series, "Face to Face", in October 1959. At the time, he was world's greatest living psychologist, founder of analytical psychology and originator of the concept of the collective unconscious. So his agreeing to be interviewed was an historic coup. Indeed, he was arguably John Freeman's most famous guest ever to appear in the series. The program itself didn't follow the usual studio format. A film team flew to Jung's Zürich home. And as well as seeing the old man walking by the lakeside, viewers were also given a glimpse of the usually shadowy, somewhat enigmatic, John Freeman himself, whose face, despite the program's title, rarely appeared on the screen. And another difference: of all the 35 "Face to Face" guests, Jung was the only one to refuse to have his portrait drawn by Feliks Topolski for the program's opening sequence. Wonder what an analyst would make of that. At the time of the interview, Jung was still working. His mind was still sharp, his concentration focused. It was a timely interview. Eighteen months later, Jung was dead. But Freeman's shrewdly balanced questions about the life and about the work create a rounded portrait of one of the greatest men of his day. Of them all, this "Face to Face" is a part of history.

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[opening narration]

John Freeman: Switzerland. Carl Gustav Jung. Born in 1875. With Freud, one of the founding fathers of modern psychology. Still working at 84, he is the most honored living psychiatrist, and history will record him as one of the greatest physicians of all time.

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[first lines]

John Freeman: Professor Jung, how many years have you lived in this lovely house by the lake at Zürich?

Carl Gustav Jung: It's - it's about 50 years.

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John Freeman: Do you remember the occasion when you first felt consciousness of your own individual self?

Carl Gustav Jung: That was in my eleventh year. There I certainly, on my way to school, I stepped out of a mist. It was just as if I had been in a mist, walking in a mist. And I stepped out of it, and I knew: I am. I am what I am. And then I thought, but what have I been before?

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John Freeman: Do you now believe in God?

Carl Gustav Jung: Now? Difficult to answer. I know. I needn't - I don't need to believe. I know.

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Carl Gustav Jung: We need more understanding of human nature, because the only real danger that exists is man himself.

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Carl Gustav Jung: I think it is better for old people to live on, to - to look forward to the next day, as if he had to spend centuries. And then he lives properly. But when he is afraid, when he doesn't look forward, when he looks back, it petrifies him. He gets, uh, stiff. And - and he dies before his time. But when he's living on, looking forward to the great adventure that is ahead, then he lives.

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[last lines]

Carl Gustav Jung: Man cannot stand a meaningless life.

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