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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

What is place?

I am taking a class with Dr. T agian! Here is a post of my latest assignment.

El Paso, TX is a location that derives a lot of sentiment within me. I often try to associate these feelings with its definition of a place; however, is a place something that creates sentiment. My current home, Lubbock, TX generates distinct emotions that are different from those of El Paso. If so, do different geographical locations deserve equal or different categorizations? I am asked to define a place, yet in order to do so I will have apply this definition in an non-subjective manner. In my perspective, a place is a location capable of sustaining a unique aspect of life. Life can be defined as nature or human activity. El Paso is home to nearly 600,000 individuals along with numerous desert species of plants and animals. It is an international border town that is shaped by three distinct cultures: Mexican, Texan, and Native American. The customs of these three sources influence the society of the city by affecting the way the people interact with their environment and with each other. Unlike the rest of Texas, El Paso retains a more liberal perspective on environmental and moral issues. The Franklin Mountains, surrounded by the city, retain the original desert ecosystem of the urban location.
All the physical and cultural characteristics of a site seem to be the contributing aspects that define it as a place. We can argue that a place is somewhere you hear about, a locality you can visit, or even an area that basically exists. Yet, in order for one to know it as a place, there has to be certain characteristics that get impregnated within the human mind. How can point-A be a different place than point-B if they are exactly alike? It is when there is a difference between the two that one can distinguish them apart. One can utilize human or even natural based characteristics of point-A, El Paso, versus point-B, Lubbock, to recognize that they are different and attain the ability to relate to their literature, art, traditions, and importance in the natural and human directed perspectives of what the world is.

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