Human limits?

by annabraideeriksson

Spatiality / Cluster 7


Distance is a major variable in society’s development


Small distances

In the first half of 20th century the city was a cluster of individuals mostly living and working within a limited area, developing a network of social relations also within this limited area. Daily life was often characterized of short distances both for work and purchase. Social network, relatives and friends often lived nearby. The near neighborhood was practicing social control; modeling values, norms and regulations. Meaning the closest district being a controlled, physical space. The physically lived world was a fairly concentrated district/city practicing social control.




Larger distances

Urbanisation of today means people moving to live and work in the larger cities or metropoles. This means that more people live in the cities. Today also people socialising not necessarily lives in the same area, people are more spread out, commuting can mean travelling or contacts via networks. Social control, meaning knowing Your closest neighbors, is reduced. The social network, relatives and friends, place for work and the service we employ, conducts a number of physically spread out islands requiring travelling. The physically lived world is a spread out archipelago with little social control.



Unlimited distances?

With network techniques continues developing, daily life’s of many people are depending on contacts through network devices. In work it dominates the communication with colleagues or consultants. In leisure time it keeps contact with friends and relatives. It sometimes is a life-style conveyer (for ex. Face book) and it also is engaged for numerous services as queries and different type of entertainment. The network, providing possibilities of an almost limitless range in many aspects also presents entries into a larger world. Through media such as films, computer games and network-groups, possibilities of another reality can come closer and even sometimes dominate over what is the real, lived situation. Are we passing into hyperreality? The physically lived world might be without attendance, lacking social control.

Hyperreality is seen as a condition in which what is real and what is fiction are seamlessly blended together so that there is no clear distinction between where one ends and the other begins.



Reflection: The further distance we can span the more fractionate becomes our physically lived space and control is no longer on a local bases but maintained elsewhere.