Spring: A Journal of Archetype and Culture and Spring Journal Books
$ 22.95

Psyche's Sisters
Re-Imagining the Meaning of Sisterhood

by Christine Downing

ISBN: 978-1-882670-71-0
186 pp.

This work is an exploration of the ongoing significance of sisterly relationships throughout our lives, bringing together personal narrative with the illuminations provided by myth, fairy tale, and the depth psychological reflections of Jung, Freud, and their followers. The book suggests that an imaginal return to our relationship with the actual sister of our early years is only the beginning; it leads forward to an understanding of how that relationship reappears, transformed, in many of our friendships and love affairs, and to a challenging revision of our innermost self, and even toward a new way of imagining our relation to the natural world. The book in no way sentimentalizes sisterhood. In her retelling of the familiar story about Psyche and Eros, Downing focuses on Psyche's relation to her envious sisters who, she suggests, push Psyche in a way her soul requires. Reflection on this aspect of the story initiates us into an appreciation of how our sisterly relationships challenge and nurture us, even as we sometimes disappoint and betray one another.


"Readers who devoured Downing's popular earlier work, The Goddess, will lap up this new volume." Booklist

"Psyche's Sisters is a welcome addition to the literature that continues to explore the understanding of human relationships in general and relationships between women in particular." The Bloomsbury Review

"[Downing] celebrates the sisterly, reciprocal attachment as the most adequate model of mature human relationships. ... Her perceptive conclusions are innovative. ... [This is] a provocative, erudite book." Publisher's Weekly

"No one (until Downing) has considered what ongoing meaning siblings or sisters have to one another throughout the long course of their lives." Library Journal

About the author:
CHRISTINE DOWNING, currently a Professor of Mythological Studies at Pacifica Graduate Institute, taught for almost twenty years in the Department of Religious Studies at San Diego State University and during the same period as a member of the Core Faculty at the San Diego campus of the California School of Professional Psychology. She has also taught at the Jung Institute in Zurich and lectures frequently to Jungian groups both here and abroad and at American and European universities. She was the first woman to serve as president of the American Academy of Religion. Her books include The Goddess, Journey Through Menopause, Myths and Mysteries of Same-Sex Love, Mirrors of the Self, Women's Mysteries, Gods In Our Midst, The Long Journey Home, The Luxury of Afterwards, Preludes: Essays in the Ludic Imagination, and Gleanings.