Psychology for Lawyers

persona & shadow



"[T]he persona may be counted among Jung's less abstruse and more practical conceptions. From the Latin word for an actor's mask, which in turn represents his role within the play, the persona, in the psychological meaning coined by Jung, is that part of the personality developed and used in our interactions, our conscious outer face, our social mask. Our persona may be a well-developed, socially adapted face—the famous writer, the devoted spouse, the rising young executive—or, on the contrary, a well-developed but socially unadapted face—the rebellious artist, the argumentative gadfly, the stubborn curmudgeon—but it is still the persona, a face and a role shown to others and used to give form to our outward sense of self."

—Robert H. Hopcke, A Guided Tour of the Collected Works of C.G. Jung 86 (Boston: Shambhala, 1989)

"Ego functioning is always, to some extent, overlaid with a certain amount of persona."

—June Singer, Boundaries of the Soul: The Practice of Jung's Psychology 191 (New York: Doubleday & Co., 1972)

"Lawyers in a corporate environment are to appear at work in navy-blue or dark-gray suits, as the colors brown and green are definitely 'out.' If a lawyer showed up at his corporate firm in a see-through cellophane suit and ponytail, his colleagues might have a difficult time taking him seriously as a 'big-time' corporate professional. When outfitted according to society's expectations, including adopting appropriate speech, body language and demeanor, he identifies himself and his status or position and facilitates professional relations with his boss, peers and clients. . . . Within the parameters of his specific occupational expectations, a person's individuality might be expressed by his choice of tie, his office furnishings, or where he takes clients to lunch, all of which make up his professional personality. His persona makes him plausible in the social role that he is playing."

—Eugene Pascal, Jung to Live By 47-48 (New York: Warner Books, 1992)

"While the persona is functioning well, many people identify with it. 'I am that,' they tell themselves. 'I am a doctor, or a school-teacher, or a radical socialist, or a rock musician, and I will let you know this even before you have a chance to exchange a word with me.'"

—June Singer, Boundaries of the Soul: The Practice of Jung's Psychology 188 (New York: Doubleday & Co., 1972)

"[T]here is ever present within the persona the danger of identifying oneself with the mask; or another way of saying that is identifying one's true self with the role that one fills. If this happens, the person thereby loses contact with the deeper sources of their own being and indeed life itself becomes one ongoing role-play behind which the person, the Self, disappears, and this results in a denial of the rest of the personality. One can sense this when it has happened, since there exists a peculiar state of deadness in people who have shriveled back and hidden behind their masks, a sort of psychological mummification."

—Peter O'Connor, Understanding Jung, Understanding Yourself 46 (New York: Paulist Press, 1985)

"The shadow is the unconscious side of the ego's operations of intending, willing, and defending. It is the backside of the ego, so to speak.

Every ego has a shadow. This is unavoidable."

—Murray Stein, Jung's Map of the Soul: An Introduction 106-107 (Chicago: Open Court, 1998)

"Everyone harbors within him an unconscious part of the personality which is unfriendly to himself."

—Edmund Bergler, Money and Emotional Conflicts 59 (New York: Pageant Books, 1959)

"[T]he shadow is not only the dark underside of the conscious personality. It has a bright side too: aspects of ourselves that might yet be lived out, our unlived life—talents and abilities that have long been buried or never been conscious."

—Daryl Sharp, Jungian Psychology Unplugged: My Life as an Elephant 47 (Toronto: Inner City Books, 1998)

"For Jung, realization of the shadow was the Gesellenstuck, the journeyman's apprentice-work, a prerequisite for pursuit of the psychological life."

—Jeremiah Abrams, "The Shadow in America," in Jeremiah Abrams (ed.), The Shadow in America: Reclaiming the Soul of a Nation 21-29, at 23 (Novata, California: Nataraj Publ., 1994)

"[A]s long as the persona develops naturally, remains flexible, and is sufficiently differentiated for the individual to put on and take off at will, it is helpful. One has to distinguish between a persona which is stiff and formal, proof against all emotion, a sort of corset for face and behavior, and one which is under full conscious control, for use when needed. . . . [W]e must learn to recognize the difference between a persona developed and worn naturally and one which is unnatural, studied, and mechanical, either because it was chosen wrongly from the start and has never developed properly, or because, in the course of time, it has become one-sided, detached from the whole, and completely predictable."

—Jolande Jacobi, Masks of the Soul 41 (Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publ., 1976)(Ean Begg transl.)

"The secret is to discover a framework that invites and not suppresses the inferior elements, that transforms the forces of the nonrational. Otherwise, we will be destroyed by what we fall to comprehend."

—David Tacey, How To Read Jung 59 (New York: W.W. Norton & Co., First American ed., 2007)


"Masks for All Seasons," in Eugene Pascal, Jung to Live By 46-48 (New York: Warner Books, 1992)

"Persona and Shadow," in June Singer, Boundaries of the Soul: The Practice of Jung's Psychology 187-196, 199-201 (New York: Doubleday & Co., 1972)

“The Revealed and the Concealed in Relations with Others (Persona and Shadow),” in Murray Stein, Jung’s Map of the Soul: An Introduction 105-124 (Chicago: Open Court, 1998)

C.G. Jung on the "Shadow" [online text]

C.G. Jung on the "Shadow"—Pt2 [online text]

"The Lawyer Persona," in Thomas L. Shaffer & James R. Elkins, Legal Interviewing and Counseling 42-59 (St. Paul, Minnesota: Thomson/West, 4th ed., 2005) [online text]

James R. Elkins, The Legal Persona: An Essay on the Professional Mask, 64 Vir. L. Rev. 735 (1978) [online text] [alt. source]

Class Videos

Class Viewing 1: Jung on Persona [3:49 mins.] [alt. posting] [best quality video: documentary, "Jung in His Own Words"; relevant clip at 17:57 mins., ends at 21:18 mins.]

Class Viewing 2: Edward F. Edinger: Social Implications [40:09 mins.] [Edinger's commentary on the ego, persona, and shadow ends at 11:07 mins.] ["Science of the Soul: A Jungian Perspective," a video directed and produced by Kevin Haasarud and distributed by Desert Spring Media in 1997]

Class Viewing 3: Jordan Peterson on Carl Jung's Depth Psychology: Persona and Shadow [1:13:47 mins.] [For in-class presentation end at 15:12 mins.; pick up the viewing again at 23:55 mins. and run to 27:02 mins.] [Peterson goes on, in this lecture, to talk about the archetype of the self] [At 37:16 mins, Peterson observes that Jung is not easy to understand and that his books are difficult. And to further complicate matters, "Jung can be frightening."]

Integrating Your Shadow Self [5:18 mins.]

Peterson on Persona and Shadow [5:24 mins.]

Peterson: Amazing Life Advice [5:40 mins.]

Jordan Peterson: Religion, Myth, Science & Truth [1:01:35 mins.] [relevant comments on the shadow at 32:40 mins. & ends at 34:27 mins.]

Harry Potter and the Jungian Shadow [19:45 mins.]

Class Viewing 4: Ian Laird Talking about Jungian Psychology [7 mins. excerpt] [1:17:41 mins., discussion of the persona and shadow runs from 4:46 mins. and end at 10:40 mins.] [Ian Laird is a Jungian analyst] ["The shadow is everything that has not been lived, that could be lived. "] [There is another interesting segment of the Ian Laird video at 27:05 mins. that ends at 30:54 mins. with passing references to "active imagination"]

Class Viewing 5: Individuation and Disowning [2:03 mins.] [Fleet Maull] [Fleet Maull is the director of the Peacemaker Institute and founder of Prison Dharma Network.] [commenting on the way we adapt, and the price we pay for it]

Class Viewing 6: Fleet Maull: Shadow & Ego [9:00 mins.] [end presentation at 2:40 mins. and skips to 4:54 mins. where commentary on the shadow recommences and then end at 7:04 mins.]

Class Viewing 7: Shadow, Culture & Self [3:44 mins.] [Fleet Maull]

Alternative Class Viewing

"The Structure of the Psyche" [Vol.2, Science of the Soul: A Jungian Perspective: Sessions with Dr. Edward F. Edinger] [41 mins. VHS] [approx. 14 minutes of the video, up to the point were Edinger begins talking about anima and animus]

What Is a Divided Life?
[5:58 mins.] [Parker J. Palmer]

Introduction: Individuation, Persona, and Shadow [13:09 mins.] [Academy of Ideas] [basic concepts; in-class viewing begins at 4:01 mins., ends at 7:48 mins.]

Carl Jung: Shadow Projection
[4:07 mins.] [reading from Jung's Man & His Symbols] [begin at 1:03 mins.]

In a Dark Wood: The Lore of Shadows
[2:16 mins.] [James Hollis]

Encountering the Shadow
[4:34 mins.] [James Hollis]

Romancing Our Shadow [41:27 mins.] [in-class presentation begins at 2:44 mins and ends at 19:18 mins.] [Richard Hill, a psychotherapist at the Davis Health Centre in Sydney, Australia]

Michael Tsarion: Unconscious Mind
[9:17 mins.] [introduction to persona, ego, and shadow]

Reference (Background Reading)

Jolande Jacobi, Masks of the Soul (Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publ., 1976)(Ean Begg transl.): "When we are alone we need no mask, but the more we share our existence with others, the more vital a mask becomes." [34]

"Different circumstances demand different modes of behavior, dress, and expression. From this there results a personality split of greater and lesser degree. The more varied the demands of civilization and culture, the more varied a man's masks come to be. To begin with, family and job require very different ways of behaving." [34-35]

"There is a great danger of assuming the persona mechanically, without realizing its presence or its way of behaving. If we identify with certain roles or imitate other peoples' roles, we become blind to the effect this identification has on us . . . ." [35-36]

"By 'persona' Jung understands a psycho-physical attitude that mediates between the inner and outer worlds, a kind of mask we develop to maintain a relatively consistent front to the outside world, through which those we meet may relate to us fittingly." [36] "[A]s long as the person develops naturally, remains flexible, and is sufficiently differentiated for the individual to put on and take off at will, it is helpful. One has to distinguish between a persona which is stiff and formal, proof against all emotion, a sort of corset for face and behavior, and one which is under full conscious control, for use when needed. . . . [W]e must learn to recognize the difference between a persona developed and worn naturally and one which is unnatural, studied, and mechanical, either because it was chosen wrongly from the start and has never developed properly, or because, in the course of time, it has become one-sided, detached from the whole, and completely predictable." [41]

Jung used the term “persona” to mean the mask or facade that we present to the world. The “persona” is that version of the self, an image or picture of the self that we most want others to see and use as the basis for their interaction with us. The “shadow” is that part of the self that we do want others to see.

The “shadow” consists of all that is hidden, held away from public view and kept behind closed doors. We certainly don’t want others and certainly not others in our professional lives, to see our doubts and confusions, our faults and failings. We don’t expect to allow the world access to our fantasies and imaginings. At times, we want to deny that we even have them. So, there is much to hide, and energy to be expended in keeping it hidden. [On law’s shadow, see Benjamin Sells, The Soul of the Law (Rockport, Massachusetts: Element, 1996)]


"Just as any bright light must always cast darkness somewhere, the conscious brightness of the ego always casts a shadow in one's personality . . . .

Those unpleasant and immoral aspects of our selves which we would like to pretend do not exist or have no effect on our livesour inferiorities, our unacceptable impulses, our shameful actions and wishesthe shadowy side of our personality is difficult and painful to admit. It contradicts who we would like to see ourselves as, who we would like to seem to be in the eyes of others. Our egoistic sense of self, our autonomy, our uprightness, senses its authority challenged by this shadow and feels the shadow's closeness as a threat, a dark brother/sister continually at our heels, awkward, nettling, anxiety-provoking, shameful.

For this reason, Jung noted how this shadow and all its qualities often fall into unconsciousness or may even be actively, ruthlessly suppressed to maintain the sanctimonious sweetness of our illusory perfection. Unconsciousness, however does not robe the shadow of its existence or its power . . . . Indeed, Jung saw how this psychic shadow, when repressed or denied, continues to work behind the scenes, causing all manner of neurotic and compulsive behavior."

—Robert H. Hopcke, A Guided Tour of the Collected Works of C.G. Jung 81-82 (Boston: Shambhala, 1989)

"[For Jung, the] shadow is an inferior personality that has its own contents, such as autonomous thought, ideas, images, and value judgments . . . .

Today, the term 'shadow' indicates that part of the unconscious psyche that is thought to be nearest to consciousness, even through it is not completely accepted by it. Because it is contrary to our chosen conscious attitude, the shadow personality is denied expression in life and coalesces into a relatively separate personality in the unconscious, where it is isolated from exposure and discovery. For Jung . . . psychotherapy offers a ritual for transformation and renewal in which the shadow personality can be brought to awareness and assimilated. . . . Shadow integration means developing the capacity to carry an expanded and more unified awareness, enabling us to reduce the shadow's inhibiting or destructive potentials and to release trapped, positive life energies that may be caught in the pretense and posturing required to conceal the shadow."

—Jeremiah Abrams, "The Shadow in America," in Jeremiah Abrams (ed.), The Shadow in America: Reclaiming the Soul of a Nation 21-29, at 24-25 (Novata, California: Nataraj Publ., 1994)

C.G. Jung on Persona

"[It is common to find an] identity with the persona, which is the individual’s system of adaptation to, or the manner he assumes in dealing with, the world. Every calling or profession, for example, has its own characteristic persona. . . . A certain kind of behaviour is forced on them by the world, and professional people endeavour to come up to these expectations. Only, the danger is that they become identical with their personas—the professor with his text-book, the tenor with his voice. Then the damage is done; henceforth he lives exclusively against the background of his own biography. . . . One could say, with a little exaggeration, that the persona is that which in reality one is not, but which oneself as well as others think one is. In any case the temptation to be what one seems to be is great, because the persona is usually rewarded in cash."

—"Concerning Rebirth" (1940), in Collected Works: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious (vol. 9 (1)), 111-147, at 122-123

"The persona is a complicated system of relations between individual consciousness and society, fittingly enough a kind of mask, designed on the one hand to make a definite impression upon others, and, on the other, to conceal the true nature of the individual."

—"The Relations between the Ego and the Unconscious" (1928), in Collected Works: Two Essays on Analytical Psychology (vol. 7), 127-304, at 192

"It is in the nature of the conscious mind to concentrate on relatively few contents and to raise them to the highest pitch of clarity. A necessary result and precondition is the exclusion of other potential contents of consciousness. The exclusion is bound to bring about a certain one-sideness of the conscious contents. Since the differentiated consciousness of civilized man has been granted an effective instrument for the practical realization of its contents through the dynamics of his will, there is all the more danger, the more he trains his will, of his getting lost in one-sidedness and deviating further and further from the laws and roots of his being."

—"The Psychology of the Child Archetype" (1940), Collected Works: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious (vol. 9 (1)), 149-181, at 162-163

"When we analyse the person we strip off the mask, and discover that what seemed to be individual is at bottom collective; in other words, that the persona was only a mask of the collective psyche. Fundamentally the persona is nothing real: it is a compromise between individual and society as to what a man should appear to be. He takes a name, earns a title, exercises a function, he is this or that. In a certain sense all this is real, yet in relation to the essential individuality of the person concerned it is only a secondary reality, a compromise formation, in making which others often have a greater share than he. The persona is a semblance, a two-dimensional reality, to give it a nickname.

It would be wrong to leave the matter as it stands without at the same time recognizing that there is, after all, something individual in the peculiar choice and delineation of the persona, and that despite the exclusive identity of the ego-consciousness with the persona the unconscious self, one’s real individuality, is always present and makes itself felt indirectly if not directly. Although the ego-consciousness is at first identical with the persona—that compromise role in which we parade before the community—yet the unconscious self can never be repressed to the point of extinction. Its influence is chiefly manifest in the special nature of the contrasting and compensating contents of the unconscious. The purely personal attitude of the conscious mind evokes reactions on the part of the unconscious, and these, together with personal repressions, contain the seeds of individual development in the guise of collective fantasies."

—"The Relations between the Ego and the Unconscious" (1928), in Collected Works: Two Essays on Analytical Psychology (vol. 7), 127-304, at 158

[For a review of C.G. Jung's ideas and explanations of the persona, see Robert H. Hopcke, Persona: Where Sacred Meets Profane 9-24, 30-31 (Boston: Shambhala, 1995)]

Jung on Shadow

“To become conscious of [the shadow] involves recognizing the dark aspects of the personality as present and real. This act is the essential condition for any kind of self-knowledge, and it therefore, as a rule, meets with considerable resistance. . . .

Closer examination of the dark characteristics—that is, the inferiorities constituting the shadow—reveals that they have an emotional nature, a kind of autonomy, and accordingly an obsessive or, better, possessive quality. . . .

[W]ith insight . . . the shadow can to some extent be assimilated into the conscious personality . . . ."

—C.G. Jung, Collected Works: Aion: Researches Into the Phenomenology of the Self para. 14-16 (Princeton University Press, 2nd ed., 1968)

| Carl Jung's Philosophy of The Shadow |
[11:42 mins.]

On Resistance in the Form of Indolence

"Most people are too indolent to think deeply about even those . . . aspects of their behavior of which they are conscious; they are certainly too lazy to consider how the unconscious affects them."

—M.-L. von Franz, "The Process of Individuation," in Carl G. Jung,, Man and His Symbols 158-229, at 176 (Garden City: New York, Doubleday & Co., 1964)

Reference (Fleet Maull)

Fleet Maull: Who Is He?
[3:34 mins.]

Persona & Shadow Reference (Videos)

Marie-Louise von Franz on The Shadow
[8:49 mins.] [commentary relating the personal and collective shadow] [an in-class presentation of the video can end at 4:02 mins.]

A Reading from Edward Edinger’s Commentary on the Shadow
[8:10 mins.]

A Reading from C.G. Jung's Axion on the Shadow
[10:02 mins.]

The Shadow
[6:37 mins.] [a reading from Jung's Axion on the shadow]

Harry Potter and the Jungian Shadow
[19:45 mins.] [Jordan Peterson] [a comment on studying the humanities, at least what they once were]

Carl Jung on Accepting the Darkness of Self and Others
[8:15 mins.] [Alan Watts talking about Jung]

A Picture of the Psyche
[3:54 mins.] [Joseph Campbell]

Archetypes of the Unconscious
[7:05 mins.] [Joseph Campbell] [relevant discussion ends at 4:16 mins.]

Shadow and Undeveloped Functions
[6:35 mins.] [Joseph Campbell]

Persona & Shadow: Insights from Jungian Psychology
[6:07 mins.] [basic concepts introduced]

Mythology and Jung
[1:15:03 mins.] [Carl Ploss & Stefan Schindler]
[comments on "shadow" begins at 1:15 mins. and ends at 3:00 mins.]

Deepak Chopra: Conquering Your Shadow
[3:27 mins.]

Discussion of Persona and Shadow
[10:12 mins.] [Dick Pearson and Jungian analyst D. Stephenson Bond] Pt2 [10:28 mins.] Jung's Theory of Personality [4:58 mins.] Jung and Ego Development [10:31 mins.] [Bond/Pearson discussion continues]

Shadow in Jungian Psychology
[14:30 mins.] [Jeremiah Abrams, co-author of Meeting the Shadow, interviewed by Connie Zweig; Abrams edited The Shadow in America: Reclaiming the Soul of a Nation]

Jung and the Shadow
[9:14 mins.] [Murray Stein] [focus on evil] Pt2 [11:02 mins.] [The Criminal Mind, with Sarah Stein] Pt3 [7:16 mins.]

The Contamination of Unconscious Contents
[3:10 mins.]

John Betts Podcast on Persona
[21:37 mins.] [commentary on persona begins at 6:35 mins.] Persona 2 [17:59 mins.]

John Betts Podcast on Shadow
[17:59 mins.]

Shadow Work
[8:47 mins.] [Alisa Starkweather]

3-2-1 of Shadow Work
[3:19 mins.] [Diane Musha Hamilton]

Persona (Mask) & the Shadow Self
[1:37 mins.]

[3:32 mins.]

Fight, Flight, or Pretend
[5:54 mins.] [Ifigenia Tsantili interviews Morgan Goodlander, Director of the Gestalt Institute of San Francisco]

Know Thyself
[7:23 mins.] [Michael Tsarion]

Lessons from the Mental Hospital
[17:13 mins.] [Glennon Doyle Melton, TED Talk]

Soul: Light and Darkness
[3:01 mins.] [Michael Meade]

The Shadow Self
[5:55 mins.] [Helen Demetriou]

Midlife Crisis Coaching: The Role of Positive Psychology in Midlife Transition
[6:08 mins.] [discussion of the relation of positive psychology to Jungian thinking] The Midlife Journey: What It's All About [7:15 mins.] Get Rid of Internal Conflicts: The Deep Wisdom Process [14:49 mins.]

Betrayal and the Inner Monster
[9:00 mins.] [Jordan Peterson]

Emotions at Work
[17:39 mins.] [Stéphanie Mitrano :: TED Talk] [comments on the two worlds]

Reference (Web Resources)

Persona (psychology) || Persona

True Self and False Self

Jung's Concept of the Persona
[Maxson J. McDowell, lexicon of terms]

Jung on the Persona
[quotes from C.G. Jung]

Jungian Psychology: The Persona

The Lawyer's Shadow Side

Reference (Persona)

Moral Tension in the Psyche: A Jungian Interpretation of Managers' Moral Experiences
[Electronic J. Bus. Ethics & Org. Stud.]

Reference (Legal Persona)

Nowhere to Hide: A Lawyer Meets His Nemesis in Cape Fear
[American Bar Assoc. J., February, 1992]

Reference (Videos) (Professional Identity)

Professional Identity in Legal Education
[10:06 mins.]

Barry Fernold on Professional Identity
[9:31 mins.]

Reference (Shadow)

Jung: Comments on the Shadow

The Shadow
[Susan Olsen]


The Shadow in Transpersonal Psychology
[Michael Daniels, Transpersonal Psychology Review, 2000]

Reference (Ian Laird Talking about Finding His Way to Jung)

Jung For Our Age
[28:20 mins.] [Ian Laird talking with Alan Marston]
Pt2 [28:34 mins.]


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