Wednesday, January 9, 2008

J.Duncan Reading

The exploration of what a human decides to keep around him is very interesting. Why do we or why would we make our landscape into something period. From what I see, we do it to fit into a group on one hand and maybe we like to do certain things (like gardening, have a lawn) on the other. But the form of the landscape can provide a symbol to reference what group we are trying to fit into. Look I have my grass cut with this pattern and therefore I fit into this class of people and can have these friends. It is a very interesting subject Mr. Duncan brings up. I can’t stop thinking of these groups that we want to be a part of. I can imagine these alpha groups have invested so much and enjoy having this little exclusive group that can do anything and only be around the people they are comfortable with. I’m sure we all have friends and family but do we all make sure everyone likes each other and is staying on top of their chores before we accept them as friends.

The social status of Bedford seems very apparent and I’m sure everyone there is aware of it even if they say they are not. It seems that this is apparent everywhere. I remember in college we lived in an apartment building in a small old money neighborhood. The houses were very well kept and could have fit into another category that might be a mix of attributes from the Alpha and Beta groups in Bedford. This is a very interesting topic and I look forward to hearing what everyone has to say about it. I hope we could all live for ourselves and not be in fear of what others think about the image we are reflecting.


Herb Childress said...

Part of our identity is the groups we identify with. When you start the sentence "I am...", you almost always finish it with a social or cultural group — sometimes racial, sometimes gender, sometimes religious, sometimes a profession group, but our collective identities are a huge part of our individual identities. So surrounding ourselves with other identity-mates makes us feel more normal and acceptable.

Chad R. Kohler said...

I would have to agree with Prof. Childress. I am curious though as to if people surround themselves with similar personalities to be comfortable, but is it more of a need to be part of the majority and not the minority?

Curtis Bingham said...

I agree with your statement about living for oursleves and not worrying what others think about us. However, I might not be looking at it from the same angle. We choose to live where we feel comfortable (I would assume)and by so doing we will always be "newcomers" and some will probably not be happy to see the "newcomers" we will have to respond to that in positive or negative way. Basically, I think we will get in return what we give.

Mike said...

In our neighborhood (there I go) there is a woman who keeps her yard absolutely immaculate. She is older, but not elderly, lives alone, and has never struck me as incredibly friendly (a prejudgement, I know). But she pays to have a yard that looks incredible, and makes it clear through snide remarks and dirty looks when she disapproves of the condition of a yard of a neighbor (I have been on the receiving end of such ire, many times). Anyway, your comment about how a person mows his or her grass brought that to mind. People can define their identities not just by a broad landscape (from a cultural sense) that they live in, but even down to the minutest peculiarities about their literal front-yard scape.

With that in mind, "Hello...nice to meet you all -- I am Man-Who-Waits-Too-Long-To-Rake-Leaves."