Face to Face with Carl Jung: ‘Man Cannot Stand a Meaningless Life’ (1959)

Carl Gustav Jung, founder of analytic psychology and explorer of the collective unconscious, was born on July 26, 1875 in the village of Kesswil, in the Thurgau canton of Switzerland. Above, we present a fascinating 39-minute interview of Jung by John Freeman for the BBC program Face to Face. It was filmed at Jung’s home at Küsnacht, on the shore of Lake Zürich, and broadcast on October 22, 1959, when Jung was 84 years old. He speaks on a range of subjects, from his childhood and education to his association with Sigmund Freud and his views on death, religion and the future of the human race. At one point Freeman asks Jung whether he believes in God, and Jung seems to hesitate. “It’s difficult to answer,” he says. “I know. I don’t need to believe. I know.”

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Comments (14)
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  • John Leigh says:

    Delivered in spades again guys,you make FB worthwhile.Thanks

  • Patricia MMRC says:

    Thank you for posting this—very interesting.

  • Kevin Berntson says:

    Wonderful! Now, back to the Kardashians. (No, really– what a great man)

  • Fascinating interview with a great man and one of my heros covering three P’s personal, political and psychological. He also has an amazing mastery of the English language and is an inspiration!

  • Following Jung for a long time and implementing his ideas really made a difference to my life in many ways. He was a gifted and insightful healer and I would love to have met him but this footage is a great way to hear him speak in person. Thank you :)

  • A. H. Jessup says:

    Thanks for a fascinating insight into one of the great minds of his time.

  • gerald potvin says:

    ha…I always knew it “I have centuries to live”….now..to be sure…well…just for today….81 and eons to go.

  • Laura Young says:

    This is so worth watching, start to finish.
    Especially the last part–he confirms my beliefs. I’m finding this a joyful time of life–in my early 70’s.

  • Tasos Tasoulis says:


  • Nan00k says:

    This interview with Carl-Gustav JUNG has been hidden for too long ;
    The fact is that JUNG’s been the deepest Human Mind theorician during the whole XXth century , and this includes crooks such as Freud of course .
    Only Erich FROMM or Wilhelm REICH (and they were all Germans , but this will be another point of discussion ) could be compared to the great Swiss Psychoanalist .

  • davey dickens says:

    Intriguing character and a man of great integrity. C.G.Jung’s legacy is certainly a most worthy one.

  • russell burn says:

    having known about this famous Face to Face for years, it has been a pleasure to finally watch it here, aged 55, which is almost as long as Jung has been physically dead: the psyche exists in that it persists.

    ” the only real danger that exists is man himself, and we are pitifully unaware of it; we know nothing of man, far too little; his psyche should be studied, because we are the origin of all coming evil. ”

    ain’t that the truth? Enjoying this site, thanks to Open Culture.

  • Dee Cee says:

    But Psychology is also an invention of man so man-made studying man-kind????
    Is this also a curiousity?

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