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Horizonte “Angst” – Call for Papers

20/08/2012 by architectural competitions

In regard to the German word for “fear” in terms of etymology, a surprising conjunction is to be found: “Angst”, deriving from the Latin word “angustiae” also translates as “narrowness”, which not only refers to a spatial relation in general but also implicates confinement and hence, containment quite literally.

Even  the Old Testament already states that there  had not yet been architecture in paradise and Cain had not built the first city for the fear of vengeance until the murder of his brother Abel.

Franz Kafka on the other hand describes a dialectical nature of the architectural terminology of fear in his late (and unfinished) tale “The Burrow”: Therein, the desire to build a fortress is directly situated in a fear of loss, which in turn appears to be the cause for perpetual concern through the diversity  and omnipresence of fear. Architecture – a space for  living in permanent fear for Kafka – simultaneously seems to be the cause and effect, catalyst and decelerator of human perception. Hence, it paradoxically fosters the (un-)conscious production of fear  as a place of refuge, protection and security; whether by means of intimidation through surrounding buildings or explicit demonstrations of power. The psychological component of anxiety in the history  of security architecture has always dealt with building types such as castles, palaces, banks, shelters or prisons and should finally be expanded towards the typologies of the 21st century. What are the  consequences in relation to shopping centres, railway stations, airports, schools, museums, zoos or hospitals in regard to the conditions given above?

Similarly, a pleasure for the uncanny, sinister or frightening situations pervades a vast number of epochs, disciplines and genres. Just as Poe, Doyle or Chesterton attempted to run the reader’s blood cold in his cosy chamber is today continued by TV- forensicists through absurdist ingenuity; transforming evenings spent on the couch into a thrilling adventure. Hence, fear becomes an amusement and  the question arises, what spatial arrangements for example actively serve this instance?

The sixth issue of HORIZONTE therefore seeks for spaces of fear, architectures of anxiety, escapes and safety cages, chambers of horror as well as shady hide-outs.


  • Proposals may be submitted as essays, projects, photographies, interviews etc.
  • Contributors are kindly asked to send a 200-word abstract.
    Nonetheless further developed material can be sent along, too
  • Essays shall not exceed a maximum of 3000 words, a project, photographic essay etc. description not 500 words
  • Text files in .odt- or .doc-format. Drawings as .pdf, images as .tiff-files.
  • Texts should be unformatted in either Times New Roman or Arial.
    No use of automatic footnote functions. Please attach numbered annotations at the end of the text.
  • Source citations should be formatted in Chicago Style (see
  • Please attach a short bio (max. 50 words).
  • Submissions should not have been published previously.

All submissions via e-mail to:
Deadline: August 31st 2012

More information:

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