This course focuses on the intersections between behavior, place, and space. How do the spaces and places we inhabit influence our lived experience? How do places come to have identifies? What are the roles of knowledge, memory, and experience in understanding the world around us? We constructed working definitions of “environment” and learn about the ways in which various environments can impact our behavior, beliefs, and feelings. We have been discussing what it means to inhabit specific kinds of places: natural and constructed, wild and urban, public and private, familiar and novel. Jacobs’ text inspires us to think deliberately of cities. Tuan reflects on the characteristics of places. Thoreau espouses the value of slowing down to contemplate what we are a part of. Bachelard asks us to think of the ephemera. How do neighborhoods become unique identifiable places that garner loyal inhabitants, visitors, and detractors?
We began thinking about neighborhoods early in the semester, and groups focused on a particular NYC neighborhood of their choosing. Incorporating readings, class trips, and independent research and observations, each group created a digital multimedia project found here. In a presentation to the class near the end of the semester, groups shared their experiences and knowledge of their neighborhoods with the rest of us.