//Our Stories, Our Selves: VSU to Host Expert on Personal Mythology

Our Stories, Our Selves: VSU to Host Expert on Personal Mythology

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West Hall Side ShotVALDOSTA, GA — Valdosta State University’s James L. and Dorothy H. Dewar College of Education and Human Services will host a weekend series with world-class Jungian psychologist and storyteller Dr. Jonathan Young Feb. 21-22.

Young is founding curator of the Joseph Campbell Archives and Library and director of the Center for Story and Symbol, both in Santa Barbara, Calif. His two-day event at VSU, themed “Our Stories/Our Selves,” will begin at 7 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 21, in the University Center Theater, with a free public lecture titled “Claiming Our Stories.”

“Wisdom tales offer support in periods of personal uncertainty,” according to event organizers from VSU’s departments of Psychology and Counseling, Communication Sciences and Disorders, Marriage and Family Therapy, and Social Work. “Such lore is an enduring form of psychological and emotional guidance. This lecture explores mythology and folklore to see how enchanting characters from Hans Christian Anderson provide clues for our own quests. These tales show how to find the right path and serve a worthy calling. Dr. Young will draw on his work with Joseph Campbell and Jungian psychology to investigate what we can learn from the mythic imagination.”

Young’s VSU weekend will conclude with a workshop, titled “Guides to Discovery: Uses of Stories and Archetypal Dimensions of Counseling and Psychotherapy,” from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 22, in the University Center Cypress Room. The cost to attend is $50 for professionals, $20 for students, and includes breakfast and lunch. The material scheduled to be presented is appropriate and useful for mental health and social service professionals, undergraduate and graduate students, and members of the general community with a working knowledge of Jungian tradition, including artists, writers, educators, and anyone interested in folklore.

“The presenting material in a counseling session is a narrative,” according to event organizers. “Clients bring their stories to pastoral counselors and psychotherapists. Showing them how to see their stories as worthy experiences is part of healing. Drawing parallels between their experiences and mythic stories can add dignity, even elegance, to what they have endured. This clinical training seminar looks at tales collected by the Brothers Grimm and Charles Perrault as illustrations of finding resilience and developing inner resources. Discussion will focus on how to analyze the structure of classical adventures for key metaphors and for parallels with dreams. We will discuss how a strong sense of life story can aid with adult developmental transitions.”

The all-day professional workshop is co-sponsored by both the Georgia chapter of the National Association of Social Work and the Georgia Psychological Association. Continuing education units will be awarded.

Young is a psychologist, storyteller, and self-help writer who assisted mythologist Joseph Campbell, a student of Carl Jung, at seminars. He has taught Jungian psychology at several different universities and is a frequent commentator on History Channel documentaries. His books and articles focus on personal mythology; selections are posted in the articles section at www.folkstory.com.

Visit www.valdosta.edu/psychology for registration and event information.

Source: Valdosta State University Press Release