It is my sincere belief that every woman who can, should have at least two copies of Women Who Run With the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estés, 1992, in her library: one for herself, and one to offer someone in need of soul healing.  I knew about WWRWTW for more than two decades before I had lived enough life that readied me for the deep dive of this book.

In the past, I have given away at least twenty copies of Women Who Run With the Wolves, and in the era of COVID-19, I have formed a small and intimate book club around the reading of this book. If you are seeking something to read that goes way beyond the surface into the inner workings of self and of women and their wildish nature, which must be nurtured and preserved, I highly recommend taking the plunge, or revisiting Women Who Run With the Wolves.  In our first Women Who Run With the Wolves Book Club meeting on Zoom, my friends and I experienced laughter, tears, contemplation, revelation, and deep connection.

Clarissa Pinkola Estés

Virginia Faber, Senior Editor of  The Reader’s Companion to Women Who Run With the Wolves -1995, states: “The thousands of letters Dr. Estés has received from readers indicate that they read the work in concert with one or more persons; parent to child, grown child to parent and grandparent, mate to mate, lover to lover, sister to sister and brother, and visa versa, friend to friend, psycho-analyst to analysand, in study groups, in reading groups – and salons.”

According to Dr. Estés, television once seemed destined to become the great storyteller of our time. “Viewers often spend much time channel-surfing with the remote control,” she says. Why? They are looking for “their” stories – ones that they can learn from, laugh over, take seriously. They are looking for living material. Yet, too often the concepts portrayed on television anesthetize instead of enliven mind and spirit.”

So it is that the literary salon and reading group have both been powerfully rejuvenated during our time, as the places where stories, real ones with teeth and guts, can truly live. What better way to bring Dr. Estés’ work to life than to discuss them aloud in the company of other women who are as interested as you are in mythos, stories, archetypal psychology, and the wit and wisdom of this work.

“A healthy woman is much like a wolf: robust, chock-full, strong life force, life-giving, territorially aware, inventive, loyal, roving.” They also run in packs making them strong and supported.

Remember, as you read Women Who Run With the Wolves, you are in the hands of an award-winning poet, a cantadora (keeper of the old stories), a psychoanalyst, who has brought her message to pragmatic works in the world, a woman who is a wife, mother, and a daughter, one whose words and images are fierce and filled with humor, and most of all, in the old traditions of her family, she brings us stories as medicine, so that we can remain close to the numinous and ineffable center of life, the life that humankind has known, pursued, and preserved from century to century, since the beginning of time.”

Of course, you are welcome to read this book alone, but I would like to encourage you to gather with at least one friend or relative who will take this journey with you.  New and pre-owned copies of Women Who Run With the Wolves are available on Amazon and a free pdf version is available online.  However, this is the kind of book you want to hold in your hands, feel the pages, underline sentences and whole paragraphs, and write  your insights and inspirations in the margins.  Also, note that there are three versions of the book, hardback, a large, and small paperback versions.  The small version is just too bulky, inflexible, and doesn’t lend itself easily to musing; avoid purchasing this version.  The large paperback is the same size as the hardback copy, it’s flexible, and easy to use offering room to navigate with a pencil in hand.

If you acquire this book and are inspired by it, I would love to hear your feed back.  Leave your comments here or email me at anu@anuessentials.com Enjoy!