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If students can’t cope with clapping, how can they deal with clubs, festivals and protests?

25 March 2015

2:30 PM

25 March 2015

2:30 PM

Organisers at a National Union of Students Women’s Conference have asked that those attending the event use ‘jazz hands’ instead of clapping, because it is ‘triggering anxiety’.


Nona Buckley-Irvine, a general secretary at the London School of Economics Students’ Union (LSE SU), was reported as saying that ‘jazz hands are used throughout NUS in place of clapping as a way to show appreciation of someone’s point without interrupting or causing disturbance, as it can create anxiety.’

So clapping is to be replaced with a mute form of applause. What I want to know is whether this fear of clapping among British students (which presumably reflects a broader fear of loud noises and big groups of people) extends to other events, such as club nights, music festivals and protests. If so, it really is a dreadful affliction. Having said that, I’d be willing to bet quite a bit of money that the ‘jazz handers’ will have recovered by the time Glastonbury swings round.


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