What do panic, crises of identity, ultra suspicion, hyper-vigilance, obsession, empathy and horror thrillers have in common? Fear - the focus of this week's special edition of WorldLink.
If you really look at it, fear is everywhere - and so unbelievably multifarious. Some people can't get out of their beds in the morning because their brains are literally subdued by fear, while others are driven onto the streets in protest because of their concerns about the refugees their country is letting in through the border on a daily basis.
In this week's "WorldLink," DW's Gabriel Borrud went to a village in the southeastern corner of Germany to visit the Bavarian chapter of the Identitarian Movement. The group is being monitored by German authorities because of its "extreme" stance on refugees, and Gabe wanted to find out why these guys are so concerned about what's going on in their country. It's no secret that xenophobia is spreading in Germany, but why?
Samantha Early brings us the story of Faizah Shaheen, a Muslim woman in Leeds, England who says she was victimized by what's become institutionalized Islamophobia - detained at the airport, simply because personnel saw her reading a book on Syria. Shaheen's story made the news this summer, but Sam goes deep into the precarious difference between healthy vigilance, hyper vigilance and vigilantism. What are the grounds for such pervasive suspicion?
Moreover, why are people so obsessed with security and safety in a place that's actually safe? What about the people who live in parts of the world where the threat of violence is literally ubiquitous?
Israelis and Palestinians on the border have been warped by their fears, but Irris Makler found a story where two men have managed to unwrap their perceptions and surmount the wall in their head through empathy. But the best part is how unique, almost crazy, their relationship is to one another. They've both lost children in the conflict, and by sharing that anguish and grief, have been able to resurrect each other.
Perhaps the most bizarre thing about fear is that human beings often seek it out, and that's what "WorldLink" host Neil King was after in his story. He's been fascinated pretty much his whole life by the horror series "John Sinclair," one of the most successful literary and audiobook productions in German history, and Neil takes us into the heart of the beast, the thrill of the horror, the realization of a childhood dream…
So what do panic, crises of identity, ultra suspicion, hyper-vigilance, obsession, empathy and horror thrillers have in common? Fear, the all-embracing human emotion.
(It should be noted, however, that those who suffer from claustrophobia and panic disorder might be disturbed by the start of the program. Please stay tuned. It will all make sense in the end, we promise.)