8 archetypes guide how the function-attitudes are expressed in an individual psyche
by Dr. John Beebe
Historical background: Jung’s eight functions
It was C G Jung, of course, who introduced the language we use today: words such as function and attitude, as well as his highly specific names for the four functions of our conscious orientation (thinking, feeling, sensation, intuition), and the two attitudes through which those orientations are deployed (introversion and extraversion).
Establishing the rationale for this language as a helpful basis for the analysis of consciousness was the purpose of his 1921 book, Psychological Types. Toward the end of that book he combined function types and attitude types to describe, in turn, eight function-attitudes. Regrettably it wasn’t until Dick Thompson published his 1996 book Jung’s Function-Attitudes Explained that we had that term for them, so most Jungians have simply referred to them as eight ‘functions’.
Nevertheless, for Jung the attitude type was the primary thing, and the function type a kind of sub-something that expressed that attitude in a particular way. Accordingly, he organised his general description of the types in terms of the attitudes, describing first ‘the peculiarities of the basic psychological functions in the extraverted attitude’ and then going on to ‘the peculiarities of the basic psychological functions in the introverted attitude.’
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This article was first published in TypeFace 16:2 (Summer 2005) by the British APT. It was subsequently published in the Australian Psychological Type Review, vol 8 no 1 (March 2006) in slightly different form. Posted here with permission. All Rights Reserved.