Neighborhood Narratives London

Brian Noel’s thoughts on last week’s class by bnoel728
January 28, 2007, 8:19 pm
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Last week, I was really impressed with the GLobe theater. The theater has played an important role in the history and development of the British theater and most of all, it was home to exhibitions of the works of Billy Shakespeare. The one aspect of the Globe that really fascinated me was the spacial environment of the theater. Three thousand spectators was the norm for Shakespeare’s plays and in a relatively small theater, this large amount of people could have a major effect on the actors because they were just footsteps away from the crowd.

The concept of traditional and non – traditional narrative was definitely on display throughout the course of the day last week, in that a traditional narrative like one of Shakespeare’s plays, required people to physically travel to a theater and sit in their seats for over 3 hours and watch a performance. I would say that our narrative was spacious, in that viewers from different parts of the world will be able to view it without much effort and our narrative was comprised out of a wide variety of topics and locations.

I liked how we used the plague of cholera to expose the importance of networking and how networks are communicated. In this case it was communicated by a central location: the dreadful water pump. The idea of networking was tied together with mapping very nicely, in that mapping and networking come from the same family of concepts. For example, people map their way through cities when sightseeing to find their way and also to find the best and most meaningful locations possible. Networking is a term commonly used in the job field and business world, commonly known as the practice of getting to know people that know people that can help you in some way. So both ideas can be interwined in that when you are networking in the business world, you are actually mapping your way through and instead of mapping your way through the city, you are networking your way in and around the city.

I really liked the Cradle to the Grave exhibit and I feel like it really represented the notion of a “Changing World.” I liked the way the exhibit was presented, using a wide variety of different pills and family photographs to display the effort people make to live longer and the many different changes people undergo at different stages of their life.


Our Last Class by danfish
January 28, 2007, 7:57 pm
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I thought that we had a great class last time. Our trip to the Globe theater was very worthwhile. I felt like I learned a lot about Shakespeare and about the British people in general. Theater has always been a large part of society here, and I think it was very important to get an up close view of the Globe. Our walk to Soho was interesting. The spots that we each stopped at to film our videoblogs were all significant places. Learning about John Snow  and the evolution of disease and how the waterpump affected so many people were all of great value to me.  This type of map, along with the cradle to grave exhibit were two examples of simple maps that can provide a great deal of information. By looking at these, and other types of maps we can learn so much about individuals and society. I thought that the activities that we did were very relevant to our class.

My Bag by danfish
January 28, 2007, 6:47 pm
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I had very few items inside my bag. They were:

1. A notebook

2. A journal

3. A Sharpie

4. A pen

5. Flight Itinerary

From these items, I do not think that one could tell a whole lot about me. In general, I think that looking at items from someone’s bag can help to identify that person, but it would be an incomplete discription. However, I do feel that you could tell that I am a simple person from looking at my bag. I had only a few items that were necessities to me. After thinking about this exercise, I realized that it holds no long-term impact for me.

The Reflection by skete04
January 27, 2007, 8:10 pm
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Now that everthing has sunk in, when I Look back to our day at the Glob and mapping our way to soho,  I can better reflect on what I got out of the day. I thought the Glob was amazing and very interesting. How importent it was for people back then can be seen from the fact that the rich and the pour both went to this theater. The limited space and the volume of people that went is a great example that shows comfort was not importent as long as you got to see the show. The tour guide was also amazing. He made some conections about Shakespears writing that I never picked up on.

Our journey to soho was interesting because it allowed for the dynamic of the group to take shape.  Some people lead some followed some were motivated some not so much. This allowed for a great group becuase if everyone was the same things would not have went as smooth as they did. The hole Idea that everything is conected and can be show by maps is interesting. I agree with it. I feel everything is conected some how some way and thats how we have came to be. Like the story about that plage in the well. Becuase it was only found in one well you could see that as you got closer to the well more people were sick and the people that leaved far away had been there at some piont or another.

The pill blanket hit me the most after the fact. Its carzy how many pills we consume and how many we consume and don’t even need them. How a lot of the pills we take are from our on doing. for example, we take die pills because we eat to much. If we just ate helthy we would never need to take that pill. It really shows that we consume a lot.

The Traveling Bag by skete04
January 27, 2007, 3:09 pm
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My bag is a traveling bag as it sits on my back ready for the next advanture. It likes to consume useful things pens, paper, FIE information, lib bom, a condom, gym, two hats, a phone charger, some matches, a tide side to get out though spots on a go, phone card, ear phones, under arm deoderent, a book light, traveling guide for london, some magic tricks and extra money just in case. He is organized and is ready for every thing. I feel my bag holds some insights in to my personality, but I feel it would be hard to really know who I am through the things that are in my bag. Though, some of the values my bag holds are the same as mine. I like to travel and im workin on bring organized. I also feel my bag is quite stylish as I feel he would say the same about me. I like to be smell good hense the deoderent. Its all kinda superfitial though. Sence, we did this I havn’t really came up with anything new. I thought it was interesting to see each persons bag and what was in side and some of the thing resemble the image you want to have or currently do have.

Mapping by stellablue2
January 27, 2007, 12:47 am
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The Globe was a great experience, not only for class but for my time in London. It gave me more of an appreciation for the man who actually wrote the pieces that were performed at the theater. Traveling there helped to gain some sort of feeling of traveling back in time.  In reality I was not going back in time but with the whole tour one kind of has to put themselves in the position as if they were actually there to understand it.  Knowing it is one thing and hearing it is another but I will never be able to full experience it because, what IT is, no longer exists.  Technology has in a way ruined history and how things were done in the past.  Some things are taken for granted.

 On the other hand though, walking to the water pump, technology and research has very much saved lives.  John Snow’s discoveries, although no one seemed to believe him were indeed correct (I can only really imagine).  It wasn’t necessarily that cholera was the thing being communicated, no one went to the water pump to get cholera, rather they went to get water; one of life’s essentials.  Where the cholera came from though is the real mystery and why it was so prominant in that specific area. Why not anywhere else? The whole idea of networks is something that works here. It is cholera moving from one place to another, from one area to that one pump from one pump to one body, from one body to another and so on.  Its funny, its like telling a secret. You tell one person and they all of the sudden your secret is all over the town.

It is an easy concept to think about maps as more than just directions to get from place to place but that is simply what they are, just in a different way.  We used the GPS to get from location to location but stopped also at unplanned places to video tape.  Those places that we stopped at to record sections of the video were significant, and even though they weren’t planned; they were still on the map. That is an interesting concept to me, because normally I would have said they were not on the map just because we didn’t coordinate them into our plan but, in fact they were and so was every other place we walked by, every street we crossed, and sandwich shop we did not stop at. With the Cradle to grave, it was a way to map someone’s life. It is still taking you from one place to another this way more in a metaphorical sense.  It is still a journey but a different kind.  Maybe it’s late, maybe I’m tired, maybe its because I am listening to the String Cheese Incident, but it really is an interesting parallel –> mapping does not have to be physically moving from one place to another it can be a mental thing too. Emotional maps too. When you get over the loss of a pet for example.  You are moving from one stage of mourning to a stage of acceptance. That would be an emotional map. What this all means, I cannot say but it’s interesting.

When I think about us walking from place to place, this is in itself another story. Just now, I wondered how it would have been being an outsider, by being detached and seeing this group of people walk around London.  What were those people thinking?  Was anybody even noticing?  

As far as themes for the class, I cannot be too sure I can tell you any themes of the class. I feel like I know but can’t draw any conclusive line from one learning to another BUT, I can tell  you that after letting things sink in a little before writing this blog, the whole idea of networks, mapping and narrative have more of a meaning because of visiting those places.

A journey through Pategonia (my bookbag) by stellablue2
January 27, 2007, 12:21 am
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The contents of my bag included the FIE information packet, one pair of mittens, an empty packet of birth control pills, keys to my flat and one folder containing flight information that my dad put together for me. The FIE info packet was in my bag because of convenience, It was the only place I could put it when first arriving. As far as the folder, there was a note on it reminding me to call Kyle between 6 and 8. Mittens, well, I wear mittens because I am most comfortable in them and they keep my hands warmest. Keys are essential to getting into my flat and locking it up so that everything is secure. The folder of flight information is just an agenda my dad put together in case I am not so organized upstairs in my head, he did it just in case I lost it…my head that is. Empty packet of birth control pills, well they are only empty because I just finished them all. Everything in my bag was pretty essential. All information packets were to keep me organized, birth control too, keeps me regulated. Mittens are essential for warmth. Keys are important for shelter. All of these things are necessities on the surface but I guess if you are willing, you can dig deeper to understang the real meanings behind what these objects mean. To me though, they are nothing but objects that just so happened to be in my bag during that specific point in time and have no relevant meaning. I didn’t pack them for any reason (except for the keys) The thing is, I don’t think about what is in a bag unless I am preparing for something, which was not in this case.