An individual's intense, irrational fear of an object or situation may lead to compulsive acts to protect himself. The intensity and compulsive quality of such neurotic fear may severely interfere with normal activities.
Commonly experienced phobias are those of germs, dirt, incurable disease, animals, heights, open and enclosed spaces. Among the more peculiar phobias illustrating the range of affliction are taphephobia, pnigophobia, barophobia and batophobia; respectively the fears of being buried alive, of choking, of gravity, and of high objects. There is also phobophobia, the fear of fearing.
Phobias and separation anxiety are 3 times more common among the children of depressed parents than in the general population, and they occur among these children earlier, especially in girls, and often presage depression.
The Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential is a collaboration between UIA and Mankind 2000, started in 1972. It is the result of an ambitious effort to collect and present information on the problems with which humanity is confronted, as well as the challenges such problems pose to concept formation, values and development strategies. Problems included are those identified in international periodicals but especially in the documents of some 60,000 international non-profit organizations, profiled in the Yearbook of International Organizations.
The Encyclopedia includes problems which such groups choose to perceive and act upon, whether or not their existence is denied by others claiming greater expertise. Indeed such claims and counter-claims figure in many of the problem descriptions in order to reflect the often paralyzing dynamics of international debate. In the light of the interdependence demonstrated among world problems in every sector, emphasis is placed on the need for approaches which are sufficiently complex to encompass the factions, conflicts and rival worldviews that undermine collective initiative towards a promising future.
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