Assignment one- Initial ideas

Developing and Understanding Photographic Practice

Encountering culture

‘Are you in harmony or in conflict within the social structure that you are apart of?’

For this project I am to produce ten analogue images. I can choose any theme to explore and can present it however I like.

I currently don’t have one clear concept yet; I’m playing with different themes that I could explore. Initially the project title, ‘Encountering culture’ doesn’t give me many creative inspirations. I think of different subcultures that surround me, different races I might encounter and different people who are having completely different experiences and a life to me. The main definition of culture I have found is ‘the ideas, customs, and social behavior of a particular people or society.’ I could possibly explore differences within the cultures to my culture but also the cultures customs that I am apart of. I can say that I have never interacted with a homeless man or a punk rocker or a lord or lady; why is this? What are there customs, experiences and views on me and my culture?

‘Culture’ is a big inspiration for this project. I have come from a very working class; white village so to be put in this city where there are so many views, opinions and races is very over whelming. I want to explore the views that they have, and also explore what makes British people British. I constantly write it down on forms but what does that mean? What defines it?

However, the actual question is ‘Are you in harmony or in conflict within the social structure that you are apart of’. There is so much to this question so I will really have to break it down. “My social structure” what does this truly mean? The definition of this is ‘social structure, in sociology, the distinctive, stable arrangement of institutions whereby human beings in a society interact and live together. Social structure is often treated together with the concept of social change, which deals with the forces that change the social structure and the organization of society’. But what does this mean? ‘Whereby human beings in a society interact’, this could be positive and negative interactions. We interact with hundreds of people a day, from passing them on the street, greeting each other or having an hour-long conversation.

‘Social change’… ‘Forces change’, there has been so much in my life recently that has caused huge social change. I have gone from living in a small village and having a really close-knit group of family and friends to being placed in this huge city which makes me feel like an ant, so maybe my personal experiences could some how come into it. ‘Organization of society’, is there a clear organization of our society, and if so how do we organize? I would love to explore how I am organized. Is it by documentation like passports and numbers, does that define me? Or is it further that that and actual groups like class, occupation and age.


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