Dylan Trigg on Agoraphobia

Like Vincent, I too am a victim of agoraphobia. In our shared disdain for ugly architecture, vertiginous hills and strange bodily afflictions, Vincent and I are kindred spirits, separated by time but united by neurosis. As with Vincent, it has become customary for me to adhere to a series of rituals and superstitions in order get through the world. Faced with an empty lecture theatre or a sparsely populated conference hall, I will grip the contours of the room in order to get from one point to another. There, I will seek refuge in doorways or behind a column, if one is available. Fluorescent light, which Vincent may have been lucky enough to have avoided owing to its increased usage at the end of the 1920s, is my anathema. In the absence of dark glasses, it would not be unusual for me to feel as though my body were about to give way should I find myself in the midst of a brightly lit supermarket.

My episodes are endless. From the aisles of Ikea to the mountains of Montana, my psycho-geographical history is marked by phobia. Each event plots a gradual distancing from the world of unfamiliarity and a slow immersion in the supernatural. How did Vincent and I get this way, inhabiting a vampiric realm, which must seem an odd affectation to anyone who has not been touched by agoraphobia? In fact, far from a radical departure from the world of ‘normality’, agoraphobia seems to me an amplification of facets of life that are already implicit in experience more generally. One of these facets is the bodily basis of being a self.

– Dylan Trigg, “Confessions of an Agoraphobic Victim

This entry was posted in Theory and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.