I think a good way to start the reflective blog is to explain my idea of community (pre-reasearch or theoretical influence).
To me community is; local, social, someting shared, supportive, a group, something you can be apart of or belong to, a part of your identiy (it says something about you), something that involves participation and acknowledgement, …
In the lecture Jenny Weight suggested that we often take communities for granted. This got me thinking about the communities I am, or might be, apart of. The first thing that came to mind was that I don’t necessarily think I ‘belong’ or are ‘a part’ of any communities. On closer observation, I can see that I am linked to many communities that are very important to me, like; my family, friends, RMIT. I am also a part of communities that aren’t very important to me, such as; Mentone, Village Cinemas. Also, there are ‘communities’ that I’m not sure are actually ‘communities’, which I am a part of; facebook, myspace, public transpot, Meredith Music Festival and Golden Plains. There are probably many more also, which, I guess, validates Jenny’s claim that on some level we do take our communities for granted.
Weight suggested that the idea of ‘community’ and ‘identity’ are intrinsically linked. She noted, “a lot of media trades upon the notion of community… I would go so far as to argue that without a strong sense of what community was, a local radio station would have a great deal of difficulty understanding their own identity”. This could mean that the media obtains it’s identity from the community it represents. Or, that they are reflections of one another. Or, the media is a representation of community. Using the Victorian Bushfires as an example, Weight argued that part of the role of the media is to represent communities back to themselves. In my opinion, this idea works on a ‘local’ or ‘small town’ level, where the identity of the community is more easily represntable, and understood. Whereas, I feel in an urban or non-small town community, it is harder for the media to represent the community back to themselves as there is greater diversity and the media itself is less local and works more on a mass model. For example, as a Melbournian I don’t feel like any of the TV networks represent me or my community back to ourselves. However, I could make a connection between 3RRR FM and my identity. Would 3RRR FM then be considered a community (yes, I think so) and the television networks more like a society (possibly)?
Defining community, with consideration to the lecture, Delanty, and communities I am a part of:
– Community is traditional (and tradition comes from modernity, therefore community exists within a modern context); e.g family
– Community is nostalgic; e.g friends
– Community is opposed to society; e.g Mentone
– Community is anti-structure; e.g facebook
– Community can be transient and momentary; e.g Meredith Music Festival and Golden Plains
– Community is where the individual is nurtured; e.g 3RRR FM
– Community subsumes the individual; e.g Village Cinema
– Community is symbolic; e.g RMIT