Recluse  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

A recluse is a person who lives in voluntary seclusion from the public and society. The word is from the Latin recludere, which means "shut up" or "sequester." Historically, the word referred to a hermit's total isolation from the world. Examples are Symeon of Trier, who lived within the great Roman gate Porta Nigra, having gained permission from the Archbishop of Trier, or the 19th-century Russian monk, glorified as a saint by the Russian Orthodox Church, Theophan the Recluse.

Overview

There are many potential reasons for becoming a recluse: a personal philosophy that rejects consumer society; a mystical religious outlook that involves becoming a hermit or an anchorite; a survivalist may be practicing self-sufficiency; a criminal might hide away from people to avoid detection by police; or a misanthrope may be unable to tolerate human society.

It can also be due to psychological reasons, such as posttraumatic stress disorder, apathy, an autism spectrum disorder or avoidant personality disorder. In Japan, an estimated 1.2 million people are part of the phenomenon of "Hikikomori" or "social withdrawal", a problem often blamed on Japan's education system and social pressure to succeed.

See also





Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Recluse" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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