Environmental Effects on Society

In both The death and Life of Great American Cities by Jane Jacobs, and Red Harvest by Dashiell Hammett, there is a present theme that environmental conditions have an impact on society as a whole and for the individual. In The Death and Life of Great American Cities, Jane Jacobs describes specific characteristics of urban environments (streets, sidewalks, parks, population etc.) that have an impact on the well being of its’ inhabitants. In Red Harvest, Hammett uses his hard boiled style to narrate a story about how a detective (the Op) is converted form a ruthless but honest man into a rather corrupt person. This transformation was the result of the Ops desire to fit in with the corrupt environment that surrounded him by lying, cheating, and stealing in order to adapt to his environment (Personville) and accomplish his goal of eliminating the city’s crime.

The Holi of Widows is the celebration of widowed women in Vrindavan, India that are condemned to solitude. The widely accepted attitude of contempt toward widowed women creates a negative environment for women, which as a result creates unpleasant living conditions. Women are forced to live in ashrams run by the government, and in local NGO's.
India has a goal of generating 63 gigawatts of nuclear power in order to reduce dependence on other nations for energy. However, this increase in economic progress is at the expense of the people living in Jadugoda. Jadugoda was once a beautiful place to live but has fallen victim to industrialization, this advancement has created a harsh environment for its inhabitants.
These children were kidnapped and implemented as part of the Lord's Resistance Army, who trained them to fight as soldiers. The children were stripped of an education and were raised as violent weapons that are trained to kill and abduct. This violent environment in the early years of their childhood molds them into savages. Even if these children return to society as normal citizens, they are condemned because of their past actions, which have ultimately lead to the murder of someones relative or friend. The negative environment created for returning child soldiers leaves them deserted, and in need of assistance from outside sources (NGO's).
The economic collapse in Greece has forced the country into turmoil. This picture shows the darkness of Greece and how the unemployment rate and economic meltdown have created a gloomy environment for its citizens.
These French refugees during World War II are waiting to be fed. A few years ago they were concerned with what outfit they would wear or what they would do in leisure time. Because of a change in the global environment (World War II and the German bombing of France during it) now they are only concerned with survival, which consists of food, water, and shelter.
American medics during World War II are providing first aid to this soldier on Utah Beach in the Northern Coast of France. This young soldier might have been considering college or a full-time job back home, however, Germany's progression changed the world environment and forced many men to fight against Hitler's tyranny in the Second World War.
This pictures represents the idea that everyone has a cage or something they build that protects them. The inner walls of this cage are built by our own efforts or beliefs. The outer walls of our cage are constructed by our surrounding environment. The outer wall is flexible because it adapts or is shaped by the surrounding environment that someone is inhabiting.
When the men left the United States to fight in World War II the factories were left vacant and there was minimal production. This change in the environment forced the women to leave their traditional roles as housewives and mothers in order to pursue industrial jobs in factories to help the war effort.
This photo shows a Belgian family displaced from their home because of bombs during World War II. These refugees were comfortable with their home, but were forced out to a more unwelcoming and frugal environment of trying to survive on the streets. This women has the responsibility of providing for her three young children, yet she now has no home to support this task.
This picture shows the devout allegiance of German citizens to their leader Adolf Hitler in 1942. Before the rise of the Nazi party in Germany the economy was in shambles, as was a lot of infrastructure after the first World War. The unemployment rate was above 50 percent, and the provisions in the Treaty of Versailles were quite harsh (included Germany's liability for reparations). Meeting these expectations was near impossible so Germany looked to a man that could reverse the economic and political meltdown, they chose Adolf Hitler. Hitler's profound success as a leader in the early years of his regime lead many people to believe in him, because it created an optimistic environment in contrast to the depression experienced by Germany in prior years. However, in later years we learn of Hitler's heinous genocide tactics and unwarranted invasions that were horrific.
This picture depicts the use of segregation laws in Florida in the 1950's. African Americans at this time still did not have equal civil rights that whites Americans experienced. It took a long period of time for African Americans to gain their equal rights, because they were living in a predominantly white society that labeled them as second class citizens. This disapproval created an adverse environment for the African American population, which fueled the Civil Rights Movement with motivation and ultimately led to equal rights for African Americans.
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