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Gilbert Durand

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Title: Gilbert Durand  
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Subject: Ritual clown, Michel Maffesoli, We Have Never Been Modern, Andrés Ortiz-Osés, Philosophical anthropology
Collection: 1921 Births, 2012 Deaths, French Academics, French Male Writers, French Philosophers
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Gilbert Durand

Gilbert Durand (1 May 1921 – 7 December 2012) was a French academic known for his work on the imaginary, symbolic anthropology[1] and mythology.[2]

He was teacher of philosophy from 1947 to 1956, then professor of Sociology and Anthropology at Grenoble II. Gilbert Durand was the co-founder — with Léon Cellier and Paul Deschamps in 1966 — and the director of the Centre de recherche sur l'imaginaire[3] and a member of Eranos. In 1988 he founded the humanities and social sciences review Les Cahiers de L'imaginaire. He participated in the resistance in the Vercors.

He was a follower of Gaston Bachelard, Henry Corbin[4] and Carl Gustav Jung and the teacher of Michel Maffesoli. Gilbert Durand gained a worldwide notoriety and his Center is currently the small group of an international network of over sixty laboratories. In his most famous work, Les Structures anthropologiques de l'imaginaire (1960), he formulated the influential concept of the anthropological trajectory (sometimes translated anthropological dialectic or anthropological course[5]), according to which there is a bijective influence between physiology and society.[6][7]

In 1984, Gilbert Durand supervised the thesis by Michel Gaucher on L'Intuition astrologique dans l'imaginaire (Université Grenoble II).

In 1991 a special colloquium organized by Michel Maffesoli was held in his honour at prestigious Centre culturel international de Cerisy-la-Salle.

On 14 March 2007, in Chambéry, Durand received from Raymond Aubrac the title of Commander of the Légion d'honneur.

Durand died on 7 December 2012.[2]


  • Bibliography 1
    • By Gilbert Durand 1.1
    • On Gilbert Durand 1.2
  • References 2
  • Further reading 3
  • External links 4


By Gilbert Durand

  • Les Structures anthropologiques de l'imaginaire, Paris, Dunod (first edition, Paris, P.U.F., 1960).
  • Le Décor mythique de la Chartreuse de Parme, Paris, José Corti (1961)
  • L'Imagination symbolique, Paris, PUF (first édition in 1964).
  • Sciences de l’homme et tradition. Le nouvel esprit anthropologique, Paris, Albin Michel (first ed. Tête de feuille-Sirac, Paris, 1975).
  • Figures mythiques et visages de l’œuvre. De la mythocritique à la mythanalyse, Paris, Berg International, 1979.
  • L'Âme tigrée, Paris, Denoël, 1980.
  • La Foi du cordonnier, Paris, Denoël, 1984.
  • Beaux-arts et archétypes. La religion de l'art, Paris, P.U.F., 1989.
  • L’Imaginaire. Essai sur les sciences et la philosophie de l'image, Paris, Hatier, 1994.
  • Introduction à la mythodologie. Mythes et sociétés, Paris, Albin Michel, 1996.
  • Champs de l’imaginaire. Textes réunis par Danièle Chauvin, Grenoble, Ellug, 1996.
  • Les Mythes fondateurs de la franc-maçonnerie, Paris, Dervy, 2002.
  • With Simone Vierne, Le Mythe et le Mythique, Paris, Albin Michel, 1987.
  • With Sun Chaoying, Mythes, thèmes et variations, Paris, Desclée de Brouwer, 2000.
  • Imagens e Reflexos do Imaginário Português, Lisbon, Hugin Editores, 2000. New Ed. with the addition of his correspondence with Lima de Freitas, under the title: Portugal - Tesouro Oculto da Europa, Lisbon, Ésquilo, 2008.

On Gilbert Durand

  • Maffesoli Michel (dir.), La Galaxie de l’imaginaire. Dérive autour de l’œuvre de Gilbert Durand, Paris, Berg international, 1980.
  • Pachter Michèle, Gilbert Durand, Sociétés, vol. 1, no 4, juin 1985.
  • Durand Jean-Pierre & Robert Weil, Sociologie contemporaine, Paris, Vigot, 1993, pp. 212–215.
  • Godinho Helder, « Gilbert Durand » in Thomas Joël (dir.), Introduction aux méthodologies de l'imaginaire, Paris, Ellipses, 1998, pp. 140–149.
  • Cabin Philippe, Une cartographie de l’imaginaire : Entretien avec Gilbert Durand, Sciences humaines, janvier 1999.[8]
  • Patrice Van Eersel, Le retour des dieux. Entretien avec Gilbert Durand, Nouvelles Clés, 30, été 2001, p. 54-59.[9]
  • Bertin Georges, Pour l'Imaginaire, principes et méthodes, Esprit critique, vol. 4 n°2, Février 2002[10]
  • Xiberras Martine, Pratique de l'imaginaire. Lecture de Gilbert Durand, Laval, Presses de l'Université Laval, 2002.


  1. ^ Wouter J. Hanegraaff Esotericism and the Academy: Rejected Knowledge in Western Culture Quotation:
  2. ^ a b Staff (10 December 2012). "Décès de Gilbert Durand, résistant et anthropologue de l’imaginaire" (in French).  
  3. ^ Centre de recherche sur l'imaginaire (CRI)
  4. ^ Gilbert Durand, "La pensée d'Henry Corbin et le Temple maçonnique", Travaux de la loge nationale de recherches Villard de Hoonecourt, 3, 1981, pp. 173–182
  5. ^ Michel Maffesoli (1996) The emotional community : research arguments in The time of the tribes: the decline of individualism in mass society pp.23, 30n. Also published in Gelder, Ken (2005) The subcultures reader
  6. ^ Les Structures anthropologiques de l'imaginaire (1960) quotation: English translation:
  7. ^ Durand (1964) L'Imagination symbolique quotation:
  8. ^ Propos recueillis par PHILIPPE CABIN (2011-06-15). "Une cartographie de l'imaginaire". Retrieved 2012-12-11. 
  9. ^ [1]
  10. ^ [2]
This article incorporates information from the revision as of 2009-07-12 of the equivalent article on the Français WorldHeritage.

Further reading

  • Dominique Raynaud Architectures comparées: essai sur la dynamique des formes pp. 11–2

External links

  • Extracts from Durand's foreword to The Anthropological Structures of the Imaginary
  • Eranos
  • (French) Nouvelles ClésInterview of Gilbert Durand, on
  • (French) , Vol. 4 No.2 - February 2002, article by Georges BertinEsprit Critique
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