tessmudge

Community

In Transient Spaces on March 13, 2009 at 2:14 am

The more we talk about community the more it seems there is no simple definition for it. There are no clear size restrictions. But we do intuitively feel three people is too little, and all of Melbourne is too big. But what about four people, or nine? It’s definitely in a grey area.

Then there is Tonnie’s terms: gemeinschaft which is basically restricting community to the country, and says that as soon as money is being made, it is no longer truly gemeinschaft. Gesellchaft is his term for society and is depicted as being an uncaring, money making, generally negative that he links urbanity.This is one of his arguments I disagree with.

I believe there are plenty of communities in urban settings. And I also believe not all regional areas are necessarily communities, at least in the way Tonnies describes gemeinschaft.

So a community we generally decided is about being inclusive (but sometimes exclusive to outsiders), sharing and knowing the other people in your community.

Tonnies describes the family unit as the original gemeinschaft. Would my share house also be a gemeinschaft? I’m starting to think we might be. But then again, there are only four of us. What if there were only two? Would we then not be a community? And when I was at Queen’s I felt that I was definitely involved in a community. And the things that made us a community are closely related to what goes on in my share house now. Only at Queen’s I was sharing a house (a really big one) with 200 people. Again, more grey area…

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