Advertisement - Continue reading below

Definition of "claustrophobia" [claustrophobia]

  • An abnormal fear of being in narrow or enclosed spaces. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "claustrophobia" in a sentence
  • "Interestingly enough, I barely touched the science fiction -- I picked up a Jack Vance novel, audiobook versions of David Brin's Sundiver and Frederik Pohl's The Voices Of Heaven, and something else, but I leaned much more towards the thriller end of the spectrum -- the Deighton books, obviously, but also a couple of Adam Hall's Quiller novels (these are re-reads, mind you), Michael DiMercurio's Threat Vector and Patrick Robinson's Kilo Class (I have quite a fondness for submarine stories, which I find quite amusing given that my claustrophobia is severe enough that I can't stand being in one for even five seconds; I went aboard a WWII sub in San Francisco and clocked an end to end speed that might have been a world record -- people swore I went up the exit ladder without actually touching the rungs) and so forth."
  • "I arrived on American soil yesterday afternoon, after spending longer on a plane than is recommended for anybody whose reaction to claustrophobia is to poke her neighbors in the eyes."
  • "What Erdrich knows is that this history, built up over generations, yields a kind of claustrophobia that has only one cure: Leave."