“There’s something happening here –But what it is ain’t exactly clear”

By Ted Bickford

(Lyrics from, “For What It’s Worth”, Buffalo Springfield)

Every time I go to Portland, Oregon to visit my son I make a point of going to Powell’s, City of Books, the largest bookstore in the country, possibly the world. It is four stories high and covers a whole city block, with over 1 million books. One of my regular stops in the store is at the depth psychology section.

As recently as last year, the majority of the books on the shelves had to do with Freud. It is now completely reversed. There are ten shelves with books by or about Jung and his Analytical Psychology and five shelves having to do with Freud.

Furthermore, I was astounded to see a store tag on the readers’ copy of the Red Book, “Powell’s Best Seller”. If you look in the upper right corner of the picture you’ll see the same tag on another book by Jung, “Four Archetypes”. They have more than one best seller, but I did not see a lot of these tags around the store. How many best sellers can you have? It’s a select group and Carl Jung is now in it.

So, what’s going on here? What has happened over the course of the last year or so that would account for this sudden widespread interest in Jung and dramatic spike in people reading the Red Book and other original texts by him? This is truly remarkable!

“There is something happening here” in Portland in our country’s largest bookstore “but what it is ain’t exactly clear”. Are these same conditions present in Buffalo, as yet undetected? What are they? What’s causing this intellectual surge to Jung?

Once you get over the shock, I would like to hear what you think. In future blogs I’ll lay out what I believe is behind it, but first let me hear from you. Let’s talk.


P.S. Tell you friends about Jung Center Buffalo and this intriguing website. You might be surprised to learn that they have a need to know about us. “It” could happen here. Maybe it already is. Who knows?

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