The political influence within and from the Mayflower Hotel has been quite monumental. The hotel itself is only blocks away from the White House and the Capitol Building. This puts the site at the heart of political influence. Many renowned political and governmental figures have stayed within this hotel, and many have performed many political acts/speeches within. One such example would be how Harry S. Truman stayed within the Mayflower Hotel during his first 90 days of presidency. Additionally, as I’ve spoken about before, the hotel holds many political campaigns and strives to motivate their voters to actually vote within elections. During this previous election, the hotel took the initiative to have their guests make a pledge to vote for their candidates. The hotel held many inaugural events and has hosted many international government officials; such as Queen Elizabeth and Winston Churchill. The hotel is a hotbed for political talk as it is in the hub of such a politically charged city.
The political influence of the Mayflower Hotel is quite strong actually.An example of the hotels surrounding political influence would be how the Mayflower Hotel hosted the Inaugural Ball of President Calvin Coolidge just two weeks after its opening. It hosted an Inaugural Ball every four years until it hosted its final ball in January 1981. It has not hosted an Inaugural Ball since. President-elect Herbert Hoover established his presidential planning team offices in the hotel in January 1928, and his Vice President, Charles Curtis, lived there in one of the hotel’s residential guest rooms during his four years in office. By being surrounded by such political figures, the hotel itself seems to be quite politically influenced.
On the basis of the exterior, the hotel itself has quite the historic feel to it. The hotels’ main entrance features grand gold detailing and large flags for the District of Columbia and also the hotels’ flags. The exterior hasn’t really been touched up so the comparison between the exterior and interior is quite stark. This is fitting though, as the outside is quite historic and shows the history of the hotel, while the interior plays to a new sense of modernism.
Within chapter seven of his book, City of Rhetoric, David Fleming reveals the disconnect that had arisen between those living in the Cabrini Green homes and those who are financially stable enough to live otherwise. This chapter expressed the difference in representation between the two groups; which I found quite interesting. Fleming delivers this interesting discovery by showing how the residents are seen as “outsiders or outcasts” and the Cabrini Green homes as a “low income neighborhood.” Alternatively, Fleming shares how the Cabrini Green homes are seen by the residents.
Firstly, from an outside perspective the Cabrini Green homes were seen as low income, failing, and overall poor neighborhood. Fleming shares that outsiders believe that they are viewed as, “incapable of building and sustaining their own communities” (149). Additionally, Fleming states that outsiders believe they are incapable of providing for their families, living in such a low income economy. However, their also seems to be a sense of racial division within the context of this reading. The outsiders imply that these low income (blacks) need the help of the upper and middle classes (whites). This can also show why the outsiders may feel this way towards the residents of Cabrini Green homes, as a means of racial profiling. Additionally, the outsiders were angered by the news of these homes being built, stating they are “hellish high-rises” in both the Chicago Tribune and the Architectural Record. (152). Many people, including Verdell Wade, were pleased to hear the news of these high-rises being taken down; they even found the news to be “quite pleasant.” (157).
However, there was much support to keep the Cabrini Green housing among the residents of the housing complex. Many of them feared for their future and their children’s future if the high-rises were to be demolished. Many of the residents were upset when they heard of the plans, stating that, “we deserve to own our apartments…. It’s not a project for me, it’s home.” (173). This and various other responses were resident’s annoyance with how they had no true ownership over their own homes. Fleming also shares how the residents want a voice within the policies and programs that go into practice for their housing. When it comes down to it, the residents state how, “we want to be seen as human beings, nothing different.” This quotation shows how the residents see living in the Cabrini Green homes as a way of life; it is their home. (159).
The seventh chapter of Fleming’s, City of Rhetoric, showcases the ideals of home, and the varying aspects of community. It shows how one can feel so varied about a place while another calls it home. This ideal relates back to the whole concept of rhetoric, how some are persuasively inclined to an area while others are not.
Fleming, David. “Home.” City of Rhetoric. N.p.: n.p., n.d. N. pag. Print.
Glory and Gore by Lorde
“Glory and gore go hand in hand, that’s why we’re making headlines.”
This particular sentence interested me and got me thinking. The overall structure of the sentence has a rhythmic structure to it, and additionally this sentence alludes to today’s society. We live in a world surrounded by violence and overly destructive relationships. This lyric shines light on that, and that’s “why we are making headlines”. This is something that can be seen daily as many newspapers and magazines show only the worst in society. Once again, “glory and gore go hand in hand.”
In his City of Rhetoric, “The Persistence of Space” David Fleming speaks on the importance of an individual’s own space. When Fleming speaks on the physicality of space he touches on the concepts of towns, communities, and cities were varying populations of people live. In addition, Fleming introduces how, “… we routinely make discriminations among them: we know which are better and which are worse, which are ours and which are someone else’s.” This can be deemed true as we contextually view different areas of “space” pertaining to our own areas of life. Additionally, Fleming relates space to experience, meaning our shared or varied experiences are formed around where we reside; which can bring about commonality or discrepancies. Within the modern world Saskia Sassen shares how, “the new world order is best characterized geographically as combining dispersal of economic activity with concentration of command and control functions in such places as export zones, offshore banking centers, high-tech districts, and so-called global cities like New York, London, and Tokyo.” This will result in an intensified division between such areas with areas without such concentration of functions. This exemplifies the division within where we live and how our experiences are shaped. (32).
When regarding the “Persistence of Space” Fleming tends to regard space as fluid, meaning it is continuously changing and forming with new experiences and people residing in such areas. This is quite an interesting reflection as it brings about our whole mindset towards space itself. Fleming continues this idea but touching on the varying economic areas that consume space. There are high tier societies and low tier societies, with the middle class flowing between both extremes. When regarding this differences in where we live Fleming shares that, “It is a landscape in which residential areas are separate from commercial ones, single-family ones, multi-family housing, rental from for-sale properties, and people of one social group from those of all others” (33). From this, people tend to choose areas to pay attention to and areas to ignore. In addition to this, areas we tend to live in are areas were others share common beliefs and values. Fleming shares this be stating how social classes will differentiate in areas of space. Additionally, factors such as race, age, and orientation play a role in where we reside. Fleming poses interesting questions in the concepts of space and how they impact our own social mantras.
Fleming, David. “Persistence of Space.” The City of Rhetoric. N.p.: n.p., 2008. 32-34. Print.