Therapeutic Landscape Essay
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The article in particular mirrors the transformation and redefinition of human’s needs through this continuous tide of human evolution. Brought by the shining glimpse of modernity it points out the aspect of human living, in particular with the rising importance and role of the landscape where people choose or actually reside. Cited in the article numerous times, the view of people regarding the landscape where they live in has become very relevant on how they view themselves and others. Brought by the weight of modernity, good landscape image in terms of availability of economic means together with a healthy environment, have become a social factor in itself.
Another strength of the article, it attacks in particular the view of how a positive landscape should integrate the main aspect of health, and how communities within a particular region could be divided and actually co exist in two main groups with different views of their landscape, one that is health affirming and the other as health denying.
The importance of image on landscape, developed a strong societal gap that often leads to a more conflicting and negative view on living.
I believe the purpose of this paper showed was to be able to explain why there is a larger and more important weight that landscape holds in molding perceptions in communities. It also aims to explain how societies or communities adapt to such changes and perceptions where certain psychological aspects of the community sink in. Particularly with the citation in on p.2 wherein as “perception of activities change, the place in which they occur may be stigmatized.” Before industrialization was an economic booster, it is a very demanded and needed activity, but as time progressed, the products and wastes have become alarming that the city was stigmatized to be ‘unhealthy.’
The importance of redefining or masking that perception has become important because people who actually live in those places are stigmatized. Outsiders perceive them to abhor and allow the lifestyle because they actually live there. It is quite logical if one might think of it. It’s like being associated with friends, “tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are.” It may not necessarily true and concise, but nothing beats the first perception. However certain assumptions like that do not result from baseless proof. Just what the paper stated on what industrialization stood for the people before and what it stood now. People are associated with images, that is why the landscape, as part of their preference or lifestyle, is greatly put into consideration.
Given certain notations wherein an area is stigmatized, in this case the North End, it widens the societal gap by actually alienating that particular area therefore providing slim access to economic and social development for people who reside there. Being in one community, the article clearly emphasized how divided a certain community might be. The others, trying very hard to mask and redefine the image of the industrialized Hamilton, by exhausting efforts to improve health/landscape, at the same time making North End a certain scapegoat of housing the bad or unhealthy side of Hamilton. The paper had extensive evidence to state that through various interviews from residents.
The efforts of creating such a positive image just widen the societal gap and psychological behavior of people. At the end image has become very important without attacking the core of its decline, instead it creates a more divided community.
I agree that the idea that Hamilton needs to strike a good impression in the outside world is very contrasting to the method of redefining a healthy landscape. The failure to accept the ills of the community by masking it and actually resulting to division and misconception to promote better and more sound solution to their societal problems.
We have been witnesses of what modernity has evolved our minds and perceptions of good and bad, healthy and unhealthy. The fact that we exist in communities, we take pride in images and perception. Status has become very important in us, that is why we tend to study and label every aspect of our lives.
The particular aspect that alarms me is the never ending circle of division that exists in Hamilton. People who dwell in ‘healthier’ landscapes pride themselves and the city and affirming the positive side of the community, at the expense of using the North End part as a certain scapegoat, therefore alienating that particular place.
Instead of reaching out and including the place in development, it has been perceived to be a place that makes Hamilton quite unattractive. Certain alienations have made people at North End are influenced to think of their status and support from their neighborhoods who also feel the same way. The division entails more gaps in certain communities, therefore their view of healthy or unhealthy environment seem skewed as a whole.
Since it’s a very pending issue, nobody seem to think of its importance, but now we tend to assess our own communities and try to assess how truly ‘healthy’ it is. Since Hamilton is a live case, it is not hard to imagine finding other communities with Hamilton’s similar example.
It has become an important educator in terms of perceiving a certain ‘healthy landscape’ and how it plays a big role in the psychological perceptions of people. It made me realize how important image is and how it maneuvers society.