A Summary of Collier’s Anxiety: Challenge by Another Name
In the article, Anxiety: Challenge by Another Name, James Lincoln Collier offers a discourse on anxiety and the actual benefits that it may impose on an individual. Most psychological studies associate anxiety with a medical and mental disorder. Based on this perspective, a large number of persons tend to associate feelings of anxiety with despondency and thus, neglect the other side of it. In his discussion, Collier reveals that anxiety can exist on extreme ends. On one hand, anxiety can be severe to the point of depression and provision of immediate medical attention (Collier 83). On the other hand, anxiety can be a positive feeling that can pursue a person to engage in activities that will be constructive and beneficial for him or her. In order to illustrate this side of the respective sentiment, the author reverts to a personal experience. During this event, Collier was asked by his friend, Ted, to spend the summer with him on the Argentine Pampas. However, due to the pessimism elicited by his anxiety, he cancelled and in the end, regretted his decision to stay behind in New England. Through this narrative, Collier encourages individuals to confront anxiety in the situations it is evident. In addition to this, the author also tells the reader to engage in anxiety-producing confrontations. For instance, the illustration given by Collier concerning the slightly dangerous activities that children participate in such as bicycle riding indicate the relation between positive learning and challenging anxiety (Collier 84, 85). In conclusion, Collier encourages the reader to view anxiety as a challenge, rather than a disorder. Failure to do so will only result in regret and an inability to learn new things within the ever-changing nature of the society.
Collier, James Lincoln. “Anxiety: Challenge by Another Name.” Models for Writers: Short Essays for Composition. Eds. In Alfred F. Rosa and Paul A. Eschholz. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2009. 82-85. Print.