Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Neighborhoods & Communities

Communities and neighborhoods harmonize splendidly to compose the intricate song of our social and geographical constructs. Although they are different, each plays a special role in creating the networks of people and spaces we call our own. A neighborhood is defined by its geographical boundaries, while a community consists of the people brought together by both geographical and social ties. Other key concepts of neighborhoods and communities include sociology, psychology, and economy. I found this interesting in the reading, being sociology minor. It is a basic theory that people mock those around them and strive to have the things that their neighbors have; therefore, we end up with similar wants, needs, hopes, and dreams among neighbors. For example, just among Interior Architecture majors, everyone is striving for a large salary, nice home, and a luxury vehicle as status symbols for success. Using this same concept, properly formed neighborhoods act as a place for positive development among those involved. So if good neighborhoods affect people positively, what are the affects of community? Where do neighborhoods end and communities begin? I believe communities are important because they bring people together from a larger geographical span and create groups that also stimulate encouragement and positivity. I personally believe in the power of neighborhoods and community because I grew up in a close-knit neighborhood where all of the neighbors looked out for one another and also did community activities such as dance, gymnastics, and church participation. I find that the bonds that my family formed with the neighborhood and surrounding community are still strong today.

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