The Racial Complex: A Jungian Perspective on Culture and Race

“Fanny Brewster introduces the construct of the Racial complex into the post Jungian and Postmodern lexicon and discourse in Analytical theory, training and clinical praxis. In so doing, she opens portals through which the light of consciousness emerges and illuminates the shadowed prism of racism and the predicate social construction of the race fiction, living well within and external to Jungian communities. In this seminal book Fanny Brewster contributes to the individuation of Analytical psychology into the 21st century, from her lived personal and professional experience.

The individuation of Analytical psychology requires interrogation of the archetype, shadow and complexes at the core of racism. This she does from the Africa-centric perspective. The Racial complex is a refinement and ethnic differentiation in the human experience of the American cultural complex, if not the broader Western cultural complex. The work is important to treatment of the infectious disease that is the psychopathology of racism. It is essential to the relevance of Analytical psychology in its efforts to heal the wounded soul of the nation. There are bodies on the bed of the Atlantic Ocean. There is blood on the landscape and the hands of American cultural history and psychology. Reparations are needed for all to be made whole. Jung suggests that the first stage of treatment is “confession”. This new book invites us to the ‘confessional’ for this difficult and necessary task.” 

Alan G. Vaughan, Ph.D., JD, Jungian analyst, author of The African Diaspora: Post Modern Views of Jung and Analytical Psychology in Cultural Context (Routledge)

Archetypal Grief: Slavery’s Legacy of Intergenerational Child Loss

“You birth a child and they die because you are malnourished. You birth a child knowing they are the product of a rape. You birth a child and at adolescence they are maimed, tortured or flogged to death. You birth a child and they are torn from your arms and sold you know not where.

This is the archetypal legacy of the African Holocaust explored by Jungian analyst Dr. Fanny Brewster who challenges us to become conscious of the grief, sorrow, rage as well as the strength and resilience experienced and embedded in the emotional DNA of those “mothering slaves” and handed down to their descendants. The trauma of this legacy affects all and is embedded in all our psyches.

Bring your heart and your soul, your emotions as well as your intellect as you read this searing, scholarly work.” 

– Christine M. Chao, PhD, clinical psychologist, diplomate Jungian analyst, USA

African Americans and Jungian Psychology: Leaving the Shadows

“This is an exceptional scholarly and penetrating analysis into the Eurocentric roots of Jungian psychoanalysis and the challenges that it faces in order to become more relevant in today’s ethnic and racial divisive world, especially as it pertains to African Americans. Dr. Brewster observes how all of the Jungian complexes have been amplified by later theoreticians, with the one exception of the racial complex; this focused avoidance is what impedes Jungian psychology from any significant contribution to the American racial dilemma. This theoretical negation preempts the required knowledge and therefore empathy required and so beautifully explained by Dr. Brewster: ‘When the African American client arrives for psychoanalysis this is the sorrow of generations that arrives with them- there is no way to leave it outside the door.’ While this book is specifically illustrative of the challenges for the Jungian school of thought, I believe that it has much for all psychoanalysts to digest regardless of their analytic persuasion. I recommend this book for analysts who understand that issues of race and racism impact the analytic dyad, regardless of their racial composition.” 

– Kirkland C. Vaughans, Ph.D., author of The Psychology of Black Boys and Adolescents.

All book titles by Routledge publishing


Childhood Innocence: Racial Prejudice and the Shaping of Psychological Complexes by Fanny Brewster, Psychological Perspectives, Volume 62, issues 2-3/ 2019: The Alchemy of What Moves Us


Categories: Alchemy, Books, Psychological Perspectives, Recent Publications