ARAS: Archive for Research into Archetypal Symbolism

The C. G. Jung Institute of Chicago is contributing member and on the board of the foundation for the ARAS collection. The Archive for Research in Archetypal Symbolism (ARAS) is a pictorial archive of mythological, ritual and symbolic images from all over the world and from all epochs of human history, Paleolithic to Modern.

The collection illustrates the universality from ancient to modern times of archetypal themes produced by the symbol-making process operating within the human psyche. Images are selected for the Archive because they are both archaic, i.e., from the primordial mythic imagination of a particular people, and typical, i.e., they show significant cross-cultural parallels.

There are ARAS hardcopy collections connected with the Jung Institutes in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago as well. The San Francisco ARAS collection contains over 13,000 photographic images, each cross-indexed, individually mounted, and accompanied by a full scholarly commentary establishing its historical and cultural context. Traditions represented include the Prehistoric Period, the Ancient Near East including Egypt, the Classical Worlds, the Christian West, and India. Users of ARAS include artists and designers, students, scholars in the humanities, as well as analysts and individuals tracing dream imagery and seeking deep common linkages which transcend nation and ideology.

Examples of the kind of images in the collection can be seen by consulting the website of the national association of ARAS archives, aras.orgJoin ARAS Online to access the entire ARAS archive over the Internet.

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