THE GLOBALIZATION OF FEAR

Workers on strike. Uljanik Shipyard, TESU (Tvornica električnih strojeva i uređaja/Factory for electric devices and machines). Dejan Štifanić, 2010.

The problems which we witness globally also touch upon our everyday life concerns. The development and spread of collective fears are often conditioned by some globally disturbing facts, often interconnected. Climate changes and natural disasters, economic crises, geopolitical instabilities, wars, mass migrations, diseases and various forms of violence mark global trends and leave a mark on both the collective as well as individual destinies, concerns and fears.

Existence

Social security, permanent employment, secure housing, quality education and reliable and accessible healthcare – are social categories that belong to the past and have no intention to return. For the majority of people, some of them represent a difficult to surmount problem in everyday life. A fear for existence can seriously disrupt the integrity of the individual and negatively impact on health, family relationships, as well as with those nearest. Although such forms of social anxiety affect first of all the individual, it is inevitable that they will structurally reflect and leave a deep mark on the wider community as well. This fear is also one of the main drivers of the search for better living conditions elsewhere.

Traditional economic activities, such as agriculture and industry, to a great extent are replaced with service activities. Whilst tourist arrivals are breaking records year after year, thousands of people in factories and plants, such as Pula’s shipyard, are forced into a struggle for existence to search elsewhere.

Uljanik Shipyard worker, workwear. Terlis, boots, gloves, helmet. Siniša Jakšić, Operaio nel cantiere navale dal 1990 al 2019.


Failure

Social anxiety and fears often accompany the modern way of life. The feeling of fear and discomfort in public appearances, in front of small or large numbers of people, is a well-known thing. This feeling can be linked to the fear of failure. The social pressure to which we are exposed every day contributes to it: from physical appearance to social status, business success and material possibilities. In order to be appreciated within a community or group of people to which we belong or aspire to, it is necessary to satisfy certain criteria and standards, inherited status symbols.

Solitude

Public places where large numbers of people gather can make us feel uncomfortable. In this sense, both everyday socialising with unfamiliar people, as well as with those close to us, can be a source of constant angst. On the other hand, the increasingly present loneliness and alienation in society do not improve the situation one little bit. Solitude arouses the fear that this condition becomes permanent. And this negatively influences one other emotion – joy. In the long-term such anxious conditions can lead to minor or severe, periodic or chronic, psychological disorders.


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