If you like crowds, you may like this. Carl Jung notwithstanding


Yesterday I wrote about my reaction to watching on TV the crowds celebrating the Black Hawks’ victory.  That I was relieved, in a way, I was not in the middle of the human congestion.  While I was writing I wondered what the phobia of crowds is called.  I googled it and founded out: ochlophobia or enochlophobia. From the Greek word ‘ochlos’ = mob.  My Webster gives “ochlocracy” meaning mob rule as an entry with the same root.

I was satisfied. And moved on.

You may remember, Gentle Reader, that, among other things, I like to solve crossword puzzles (especially the New York Times variety) and I have a propensity to experience coincidences.

Try this one on for size.

Later in the day yesterday I picked out one of the New York Times crosswords that I saved from several  desk calendars a few years ago.  Only the harder ones from later in the week.  They have the answers on the back. I try not to peek.

And then it happened.

40 down.  6 letters. “What ochlophobists fear”


And guess what the ‘w’ connected with?

WIKIPEDIA!    Where I got, of all things, the name of the phobia.



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  • As I mentioned earlier, if you are doing the NY Times crossword, you should be reading something more authoritative than Wikipedia.

    I was wondering what the crowd was doing in Wrigleyville, until I remember that it did the same thing 2 years ago. There appear to be bars on the near west side this time. I wonder what would have happened if it had not rained earlier in the evening and the Cubs-Indians game was letting out at about that time. Other than the L flag going up.

  • According to sociologists David Schweingruber and Donald T. Wohlstein the seven myths of crowd psychology are spontaneity, suggestibility, irrationality, anonymity, emotionality, unanimity, and violent destruction...That's quite a cocktail, and could easily be swapped out for one of Jung's descriptions for the unconscious or his religious equivalent YWVH. The other descriptions tend to be the qualities needed to deal with the former.

  • In reply to 4zen:

    Under which one or set of qualities comes choke a cop?. At least the accused was from the neighborhood, more or less.

  • In reply to jack:

    Jack I would guess emotionally irrational.

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