Why Mythological Studies; and what does that have to do with Depth Psychology?

Hi Friends,

This is the part where I formally introduce myself and write a little bit about why I’ve decided to start a blog. My name is Gerry. I’m 41 years old and am currently enrolled in a MA/PhD program in Mythological Studies with Emphasis in Depth Psychology. Before I go into my personal history, let me take a moment to explain what my degree program is about and what it means.

Right now, I am in the third quarter of my first year of study in the program. That means that technically, I am not yet an active PhD student. In other words, being that the program itself provides a highly specialized degree, all candidates must complete three years of work in preparation to complete their work. The first two years culminate in the completion of a “Comp” exam. After receiving a passing mark on my comps, I will be awarded a Master of Arts (or “MA” in my field of study. After that, each candidate completes a third year of post-graduate study which includes instructor-guided preparation towards the develop of his, her, or their dissertation research.

After the third year of study, I will have 1-2 years to complete my dissertation work. Upon completion of my research and approval of my defense, I will be awarded a PhD in Mythological Studies with Emphasis in Depth Psychology.

Now again, what on Earth does that mean?

This is going to be tough, and I will probably need to edit it over time, but here is my initial attempt to describe our coursework. It goes something like this: through reading ancient texts and comparing World Mythology, philosophical studies, examining the history of Mythology, learning approaches and methodologies to the study of Myth, a learning the history and practices of Depth Psychology (from Freud to Jung to Hillman to von Franz to now), and finally, always with an emphasis on the analysis of Myth through a Depth Psychological lens, we look deeply into Self and world in an attempt to understand the subconscious and understand our own Personal Myths and the way Mythology impacts the current world.

My amazing and incredibly gifted writing tutor (who is a fiction writer herself), @Anne Larson, told me to think of grad school as a way to provide a vast amount of information and sources to be indexed and resourced later throughout the course of my career.

SO, here I am! I am three quarters of the way into my first year of studies, and I want to share my experiences, my setbacks, my vulnerabilities, my creative works, and ultimately, my process as the work develops over time.

I also plan to share past and future creative workings, personal writing and anecdotes, short stories, insights, thoughts, poetry, visual and performance art, and anything else that comes up along the way!

I ask only that you respect me as an individual, and I promise to do the same. I’ve been told before my more than a few wise people in my life that I am here to be a bridge… to help bridge divides between peoples, groups, and worlds. I vow to do my best to build as many bridges as I can while I’m here.

With love and respect,

Gerry

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