ANXY IS AT THE VERY TOP

HuF-Chefredakteur Michael Hopp hat bei der Indiecon am 26. August 2017 zum wiederholten Mal seine Blattkritik gehalten. Unter den besprochenen Magazinen dieses Mal: Anxy, ein US-amerikanisches Magazin über psychotische Angsterkrankungen. „Inhaltlich und gestalterisch – die Qualität von Anxy hat mich total überzeugt“, sagt Michael Hopp. Hier folgt seine – mit Rücksicht auf die anwesende US-amerikanische Gründerin des Magazins, Indhira Rojas – auf englisch gehaltene Blattkritik:

Meet Anxy: A new magazine of personal narratives in mental health, filled with real perspectives, intimate stories, and astonishing art that explores our inner worlds. That´s how Anxy describes itself on the internet – and now let me tell you, what I think about it after having seen the first issue.

My personal feeling was quite ambivalent when I saw Anxy first – especially when I heard that most of the editors confess to suffer from this kind of anxiety disorders and the magazine is also a way for these colleagues to deal with it. I must say, in the first moment I felt a little suspicious about it – maybe because I’ve learnt from a long experience that too much confession often turns out as a kind of limitation when we talk about writing, journalism and media.

For example I think it´s very helpful for many of us that a movement like the „Anonymous Alcoholics“ exits – nevertheless I would be kind of bored when they would break into publishing and start magazines using this „Hi, my name is Lisa“-Attitude.

For a similiar reason I would not have been curious, if someone would have founded a magazine on the Burn Out Syndrome – maybe someone has? – because at the peak of the burn out hype, I myself got close to burn out from reading all this burn out articles in the media. Now I see, burn out has burnt out itself and has become – as far as I understand – part oft he bigger familiy of the anxiety diseases.

Please pardon me, I don´t want to be cynical, I just try to be honest in asking myself for my feelings when I first saw your magazine.

So far my private point of view. As a media developer and editor in chief and as creator of the former zeitgeist magazines WIENER and Tempo I must say that I was really kind of shocked when I first saw Anxy – and that for a simple reason: In these days you cannot do anything in the media that is more ZEITGEIST than anxy is.

So why didn’t I have the idea?

Besides from joking, there is a true core in the ZEITGEIST thesis – anxiety disorders and symptoms seem to have epidemic dimensions, in sweeping not only through Generation Y and with Millions more of people suffering of these disorders.

But in a big difference to burn out, that was more personal, anxiety has taken on an political dimension, for example in America, where the anxious have elected the most anxious of all for president.

It´s really a long list, this guy is afraid of – afraid of economic failure, afraid of immigrants, afraid of beeing overseen, afraid of having too little hair and a too tiny penis – and in direct consequence this most fearful man started to terrorize the whole world – with his ANGER.

And now we are right into ANXY and it´s Anger issue. Not to say, that the magazine is made by Trump Afficionados – quite the opposite, ANXY shows that Anxiety is heavily also among the Non- und Anti-Trump-Milieus – but everyone who feels fear has dealt with fear turning into anger – in line with the famous Johnny Rotten Mantra   „Anger is an Energy“. I think that is, what the Anger issue of Anxy is about.

But the point is, and this is really a point, and it came surprising to me – when looking at Anxy and reading in it the whole thing shows something beyond to what I already tried to explain – it shows, how a certain degree of sophistication, of editorial intelligence, of pure craftmanship in writing, editing and designing can turn around each expectation, each prejudice, each Zeitgeist diagnosis one might have.

I am so excited about Anxy – and you feel that I am excited – because ist demonstrates so clearly that the power of storytelling, of true storytelling, overwhelms the barriers of ideologies – even of your own. Anxy is not talking about diseases or disorders in an general, theoretical way – it just shows in the moste concrete way – even when it’s illustrated and not photographed – how people come along in their situations and also, what could be the reasons for, when things go strange.

So it comes out, that ANXY is much more than it´s program and maybe it´s belief – it´s a brilliantly done bookazine ready to reach much more people than fit in the sitting circle of an Anonymous Alcoholics meeting.

Mehr Blattkritik von Michael Hopp gibt es am 11. September bei dem 11. Blattkritik Salon Hamburg.

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