Wednesday, April 2, 2008

walk around the blog assignment

a couple of points to think about for monday's blog assignment. the Lynch & Rivkin article was meant to both introduced you to urban studies methods and begin to sensitize you to using your skills of observation.
in class we discussed the notion of space. as noted by Lynch & Rivkin, people either perceive order in space or they try to create order in the absence it:

"the individual must perceive his environment as an ordered pattern, and is constantly trying to inject order into his surroundings, so that all the relevant perceptions are jointed one to the other." --Lynch & Rivkin (1959) A Walk Around the Block

we also discussed the social construction of space, the idea that both the built environment and our conception of it are constructed through social interaction. As noted by Henri Lefebvre:

"Social space is a social product - the space produced in a certain manner serves as a tool of thought and action. It is not only a means of production but also a means of control, and hence of domination/power." -- Lefebvre (1991) The Production of Space

In your blog posts of 3-500 words max, consider the following:

1) observation skills: trust your skills of observation to inform what you see in the blog content.

2) ordered patterns: what sense of order is present and/or imposed? you dont want to spend too much time discussing the structure per se. instead your comments should focus on indications of the blogger's reaction to or interaction with the structure.

3) social construction of space: in the blog you select, look for indications of socially constructed norms, particularly with respect to space.

UPDATE: slides from class

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