Building Bridges and Breaking Boundaries: Modernity and Agoraphobia

Abstract

The material function of a bridge is to facilitate movement – of vehicles, goods and services, military hardware and people. Symbolically, the bridge is a connector and therefore a triumphant emblem of modernity. But the converse of connection is the breaking, or even transgressing, of boundaries. The bridge is a boundary breaker; an intrusion into bounded space. This paper argues that inherent in modernity is the breaking and remaking of boundaries. This can lead to psychological strain, of which agoraphobia is a manifestation. For the makers and celebrators of modernity the bridge was a symbol of progress, but for critics it represented the inhumanity of ‘progress’, and for individual agoraphobics, terror.

Keywords

agoraphobia

How to Cite

Holmes, J., (2006) “Building Bridges and Breaking Boundaries: Modernity and Agoraphobia”, Opticon1826 1.

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Joshua Holmes (UCL)

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