Black People : Urban Decay in Black America

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Christi

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Mar 22, 2018
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Hey all I'm currently working on my thesis for graduation (I'm a design student) and was hoping to get some feedback from the black community.

I'm focusing on the misrepresentation and under-representation of African Americans. The black community is often associated with intractable problems. People in color that are held in esteem, too often personify a circumscribed spectrum of human qualities. Many important dynamics that affect black lives such as a history of economic disadvantage and a prevailing anti-black bias in society aren't discussed, and when they are they're often portrayed as victims rather than as agents, leaders, and creators.

I'm examining instances of urban decay and how Black Americans fit within it - a decay that can be characterized by the declining in power, quality, and vigor of Black American culture and the literal physical decay. I'm looking at these instances of decay as a tangible, symbolic, and visual representation of the decay and demolition within the black community and culture. This is a community that has been packed into racially segregated quarters, in housing and neighborhoods that were not designed for optimizing quality of life with years of economic neglect, police brutality, and other racial conflagrations. Where whole buildings have been torn down, abandoned, foreclosed and an entire culture has been destroyed, deconstructed.

I'm taking materials - the debris, the rubble, the trash, the things that have been torn down - and change them into something of value. My goal is to design an object (street furniture) that aggrandizes that changing dynamic of being a black person in an urban environment. Rethinking the way we see and perceive value in a decaying, disadvantaged area to show that there is beauty in the suffered damaged and history, that there is legitimacy, and that they hold validity. In order to bring awareness of the socioeconomic deprivation and by elevating materials in turn elevate the representation of a community.

The street furniture I hope to make is essentially is a social commentary on the perception of value and understanding in regards to Black America.

I really want to involve the community as much as possible. So, this discussion is hopefully another route to that. So my questions for you are:

What is your story?
What is it like to be a black person in America, or wherever you are personally?
What are things you think represent the black community? Are there any skills, materials practices, or values you think define us a whole?
What type of environment would you want to create? What type of environment would you want in your neighborhood or community?
Any other type of feedback or suggestion is greatly appreciated
 

Clyde C Coger Jr

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Hey all I'm currently working on my thesis for graduation (I'm a design student) and was hoping to get some feedback from the black community.

I'm focusing on the misrepresentation and under-representation of African Americans. The black community is often associated with intractable problems. People in color that are held in esteem, too often personify a circumscribed spectrum of human qualities. Many important dynamics that affect black lives such as a history of economic disadvantage and a prevailing anti-black bias in society aren't discussed, and when they are they're often portrayed as victims rather than as agents, leaders, and creators.

I'm examining instances of urban decay and how Black Americans fit within it - a decay that can be characterized by the declining in power, quality, and vigor of Black American culture and the literal physical decay. I'm looking at these instances of decay as a tangible, symbolic, and visual representation of the decay and demolition within the black community and culture. This is a community that has been packed into racially segregated quarters, in housing and neighborhoods that were not designed for optimizing quality of life with years of economic neglect, police brutality, and other racial conflagrations. Where whole buildings have been torn down, abandoned, foreclosed and an entire culture has been destroyed, deconstructed.

I'm taking materials - the debris, the rubble, the trash, the things that have been torn down - and change them into something of value. My goal is to design an object (street furniture) that aggrandizes that changing dynamic of being a black person in an urban environment. Rethinking the way we see and perceive value in a decaying, disadvantaged area to show that there is beauty in the suffered damaged and history, that there is legitimacy, and that they hold validity. In order to bring awareness of the socioeconomic deprivation and by elevating materials in turn elevate the representation of a community.

The street furniture I hope to make is essentially is a social commentary on the perception of value and understanding in regards to Black America.

I really want to involve the community as much as possible. So, this discussion is hopefully another route to that. So my questions for you are:

What is your story?
What is it like to be a black person in America, or wherever you are personally?
What are things you think represent the black community? Are there any skills, materials practices, or values you think define us a whole?
What type of environment would you want to create? What type of environment would you want in your neighborhood or community?
Any other type of feedback or suggestion is greatly appreciated


Welcome Christi, enjoy your stay and best of luck with your Thesis and graduation.

Personally, I'm a big proponent of Reparations for Black people as the panacea.

...

 
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IFE

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REGISTERED MEMBER
Jan 20, 2015
3,041
503
Hey all I'm currently working on my thesis for graduation (I'm a design student) and was hoping to get some feedback from the black community.

I'm focusing on the misrepresentation and under-representation of African Americans. The black community is often associated with intractable problems. People in color that are held in esteem, too often personify a circumscribed spectrum of human qualities. Many important dynamics that affect black lives such as a history of economic disadvantage and a prevailing anti-black bias in society aren't discussed, and when they are they're often portrayed as victims rather than as agents, leaders, and creators.

I'm examining instances of urban decay and how Black Americans fit within it - a decay that can be characterized by the declining in power, quality, and vigor of Black American culture and the literal physical decay. I'm looking at these instances of decay as a tangible, symbolic, and visual representation of the decay and demolition within the black community and culture. This is a community that has been packed into racially segregated quarters, in housing and neighborhoods that were not designed for optimizing quality of life with years of economic neglect, police brutality, and other racial conflagrations. Where whole buildings have been torn down, abandoned, foreclosed and an entire culture has been destroyed, deconstructed.

I'm taking materials - the debris, the rubble, the trash, the things that have been torn down - and change them into something of value. My goal is to design an object (street furniture) that aggrandizes that changing dynamic of being a black person in an urban environment. Rethinking the way we see and perceive value in a decaying, disadvantaged area to show that there is beauty in the suffered damaged and history, that there is legitimacy, and that they hold validity. In order to bring awareness of the socioeconomic deprivation and by elevating materials in turn elevate the representation of a community.

The street furniture I hope to make is essentially is a social commentary on the perception of value and understanding in regards to Black America.

I really want to involve the community as much as possible. So, this discussion is hopefully another route to that. So my questions for you are:

What is your story?
What is it like to be a black person in America, or wherever you are personally?
What are things you think represent the black community? Are there any skills, materials practices, or values you think define us a whole?
What type of environment would you want to create? What type of environment would you want in your neighborhood or community?
Any other type of feedback or suggestion is greatly appreciated

There are many, many books and other reference sources that might answer your questions.
Black People are not victims.
It’s wonderful being a Black person.
Black people usually have identical skills as any other race of people.
We’re pretty much the same type person as other person, with the exception of our brown skin and curly kinky hair.

Your thesis seems to be focused on negatives in the Black communitiesits. I think we’re in a time to discuss, write about, positive Black success stories. Gone are the days of stereotype writings.

The type of feedback you’re requesting can be seen on the media any given day.

What is it like to be a Black person? feels like I’m a person with brown skin.
What type of answer are expected when this question is asked?
 

Christi

New Member
REGISTERED MEMBER
Mar 22, 2018
3
2
There are many, many books and other reference sources that might answer your questions.
Black People are not victims.
It’s wonderful being a Black person.
Black people usually have identical skills as any other race of people.
We’re pretty much the same type person as other person, with the exception of our brown skin and curly kinky hair.

Your thesis seems to be focused on negatives in the Black communitiesits. I think we’re in a time to discuss, write about, positive Black success stories. Gone are the days of stereotype writings.

The type of feedback you’re requesting can be seen on the media any given day.

What is it like to be a Black person? feels like I’m a person with brown skin.
What type of answer are expected when this question is asked?


First I want to thank you for taking the time to reply to my post, before I address some of the things you said, although I'm not sure if you read everything.

My thesis is not focused on seeing Black Americans as victims or focusing on the negative things related to the Black community. My focus is actually surrounded in the fact that despite efforts, success, and accomplishments Black people are constantly underrepresented and misrepresented. I even addressed that as one of the problems in one of the first things I said - "often portrayed as victims rather than as agents, leaders, and creators."

Secondly, I love being Black. And its a well-known fact that just because I, or any of my fellow brothers and sisters in color are proud of who we are, our history, all that we've persevered, it doesn't mean the rest of world is. People who aren't Black in America - and the rest of the world in general - are incredibly uneducated about Black history, and the Black community as a whole outside of knowing slavery happened. I can't solve the issues that plague the Black community, or completely educate the rest of the world, but I can open up a way for dialogue and community engagement through things I design.

I love being Black, but I am fully aware that most of the world does not feel the way I do. People view Black communities as disparaged and with little value. The whole point of my thesis is to speak to that perception and often misconception of value. Whereas the furniture I'm making will become a visual metaphor. I personally don't believe we should solely talk about the success and the positive without drawing back on the history of negativity - it's because of that negativity that we propel ourselves forward.

I'm attempting to elevate the representation of the Black community (to essentially simplify my goal).

In regards to the questions, its meant to dig into personal experiences. If you don't have any, then you're fortunate in a sense. The type of feedback I'm requesting isn't seen on the media - also, a bit of my point. When you turn on the news, do you see stories of Black accomplishments outside of sports, music, or tv industry? I sure don't. Although there are more and more people trying to shed light on positives, it's not the level it should be.

People like to believe there has been some great progression for acceptance, acknowledgement, representation, and so many of other things in regards to Black people - when there hasn't been. I personally feel it every single day.
 
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