Sunday, February 22, 2009

Midterm - Definition of Neighborhoods

Japzon, A. C., & Gong, H. (2005). A neighborhood analysis of public library use in New York City. Library & Quarterly, 75(4): 446-463. Addresses social capital issues and library branches serving communities of color in NYC.

How did the researchers define “neighborhoods”?

In this article the nieghborhood is defined as "a geographical or spatial entity with boundaries." Each nieghborhood has its own certain characteristics that produce an overall identity, to which libraries must provide service for. The article provides examples of attributes that contribute to this identity such as demographics, the environment, proximity, its political attributes, and its social-interactive characteristics. These factors vary by importance throughout each neighborhood, but the most important attribute, the article argues, is the "social and spatial interactions" in the community. It goes on to give a narrower definition of a neighborhood based off this argument, that it is a "limited territory within a larger urban area, where people inhabit dwellings and interact socially." It also defines it as a place in which "certain social relationships exist." These different definitions highlights the articles stand point on the nieghborhood and the relationships within a community that gives it a certain identity. The library must understand this identity providing materials and resources that will benefit and help this identity grow.

Kevin Nieuwenhuis

No comments:

Post a Comment