Home 1230 North Burling Street


Reading Analysis 3: Home 1230 North Burling Street

        In Chapter Seven, “Home”, in  City of Rhetoric author David Fleming synthesizes his two previous chapters which discuss blacks’ political participation as subordinate to whites. In history, political initiatives or movements have occurred through political coalitions and for groups of homogeneous intellect or phenotypes to unite and gain political moment. However, the way the black community is scattered throughout the metropolitan region does not provide a conducive environment for (Fleming, 149).  In chapter seven Fleming explores the Cabrini Green neighborhood where he notes the external perceptions of inner-city public housing in the neighborhood and their insufficient political representations. The political representation of the area is nearly non-existent, which in turns allows for the area to be readily demolished and gentrified. The lack of representation is significant because Fleming stresses the empowerment of the black community who want to leave public housing and who want to stay in public housing and rehabilitate the area. Fleming proposes a way to empower the community is to be civically and politically engaged. However, the negative perception outsiders have of public housing residents are barriers to participate, and perhaps the reason residents struggle with voicing their opinions on how they should live, which explains why “public housing residents consistently ask to be seen and treated not as poor, black, or anything else, but as full and normal human beings” (151).

        It is this form of dehumanization is accomplished through rhetorical strategies which Fleming exposes in Chapter 7. For instance, the diction of how outsiders describe the ghetto or public housing neighborhoods presents a narrative that inhibits the growth of the black community through word choice, because every word carries a positive or negative connotation. Fleming argues, the negative language that describes public housing neighborhoods is the very reason why it is easy to easily demolish public housing units and exclude the black community from voicing their opinions about their living conditions. Another contributor to civic disengagement is the placement of public housing and the disunity of black residents.  The rhetoric that surrounds public housing residents is a negative one, and is why Fleming argues the importance of the empowerment of the black community. In order to improve the black community and to no longer dehumanize or view them as inferior is to understand the complexity of these areas, and the importance to empower them to rehabilitate their communities or provide opportunities to leave. The argument matters because a collective homogeneous environment is dangerous because it disregards minorities in society, which endangers the democracy of a state because the tyranny of the majority is not a democratic society. The democracy of America is being endangered by single narratives and skewed rhetoric.


RA 6- Post Gender Society

In her article “His & Hers? Designing for a Post-Gender Society,” Suzanne Tick discusses the need for society to familiarize themselves with a new post-gender society. In her article, she addresses the sectors of society that are supporting gender-neutral roles in different ways (e.g. Google creating all-inclusive bathrooms). In fact, Suzanne argues the post gender movement is a response to media and politics challenging it. A grand facilitator of the gender-neutral movement has been both through the fashion and business industry, along with job and college applications. Another facilitator for gender neutral norms is through gender-neutral bathrooms, which allow individuals to feel comfortable.

The image above is an example of what a gender neutral toilet resembles.

The image above illustrates the fashion industry  reject gender norms.

In sum, Tick argues society must normalize gender neutrality through public means. Ultimately, her argument adds to the conversation of how public means is enabling gender norms to be questioned, and redefined. Blurring the lines in fashion, business, restrooms, and other sectors society will allow society to normalize gender neutrality.




RA 5- Final Chapter

             In his final chapter of City of Rhetoric, David Fleming argues the importance of civic engagement, because politics is what shapes the city in which one lives in. Flemming stresses the importance of questioning one’s city to understand the purpose of space and place, because engaging in that conversation allows for an individual to understand the underlying relationship of space, place, and how an individual is placed into that conversation.


The image above illustrates Athens, home of city of rhetoric.

          Furthermore, in his final chapter Flemming stresses a city’s design should benefit everyone in the city, rather than a selected few with influence with wealth. Firstly, He leaves a message for his reader his book to be equipped with how to design an equal rhetorical society. Secondly, in his message he states citizens should be invested in their local government. Lastly, He believes politics is the way for individuals to be directly involved and improve the change they seek.

In summation, David Fleming argues the importance of civic engagement by understanding the relationship between citizens and cities. Through socio-economic conditions and insufficient education some citizens are vulnerable to the power of rhetoric. Mainly because they don’t know how to engage in the public sphere, and much less the power of rhetoric influencing their decision making. He stresses for every stakeholder to feel like their opinion matters in society they must be civically engaged. Because he ultimately believes Individuals shapes a city’s infrastructure and social space.


RA 4- Chapter 8

In chapter eight,“Toward a New Sociospatial Dialectic,” of his book City of Rhetoric, David Fleming argues there exist  a relationship between location and people who inhabit the space, and how one’s socioeconomic status determines one’s rhetorical experience in their existing community. Using Chicago, Illinois Fleming is able to support his argument, in this case he uses the Cabrini Green neighborhoods, where public housing in the prominent form of housing, and how the area is secluded from mainstream society.  So far, Fleming has discussed  “ghettos”, “suburbia”, “new urbanism”, and homes in his previous chapter to discuss how the relationship between people and location exist piratically everywhere.

Courtesy of Austin News Weekly this image  presents children playing in front of Cabrini Green public housing in  Chicago, IL.

For example,  in part II he juxtaposes two type of neighborhoods that exhibit this relationship, in his chapter of “Ghetto” and “Suburbia” he analyzed the different demographics and how that effects their rhetorical experience to engage in their community.   Fleming is able to effectively present a  connection between the rhetorical situation between location and people, no matter the environment, each location present a rhetorical situation, and he believes cities are designed by accident, no each design plays a role into the bigger conversation of how different people of color are treated in society.

RA 3- David Fleming’s City of Rhetoric “Home”



In part two of David Fleming’s City of Rhetoric, Chapter “Home,” Fleming introduces the community in Chicago Caprini Green, as an entry way into analyzing  the language surrounded public housing in the United States, Fleming argues the language surrounded by public housing avails itself to be excluded from interacting with its environment, which leads to lack of civic engagement and notions those who live in public housing do not participate in government, but reap the benefits of government, which is a misconception entirely on it’s own. Nonetheless, Fleming explores the support systems that are vital for people of color who live in public housing to have an active voice in their community, in order for them to have say in changes their home’s need or improvements.

Courtesy of  South China Morning Post. The image above exemplifies a communities desire to assist know matter what level of the mountain it is, which is symbolic to socioeconomic equity described in “Home.” 

In “Home” Fleming explores the stigmatization of class, and analyzes the origin of social fragmentation begins with distinguishing groups of people through class.  Another form of social fragmentation is through the diction that is used in public housing legislature, and describing individual’s who are eligible. Through this language public housing residents, are inclined to recuse themselves from society to not be judged by their economic situation. Fleming believes human beings no matter their socioeconomic status have the fundamental right and civic duty to engage in their government to do so Fleming believe’s is done through empowerment to the people living in public housing, “All  human communities today require both internal organization and outside support to be viable” (163). In order for a community to have a say in their well being they must engage, but to do so  certain barriers may have to be addressed. In this case, the wording of how to describe individual’s living in public housing must be given empowered to engage in their local community, and support from other neighborhoods to assists them strive for individual success. 

RA 2- Schindler’s “Architectural Exclusion”

In her essay , Architectural Exclusion: Discrimination and Segregation Through Physical Design of the Built Environment,”Architectural Exclusion: Practice” section Schindler observes most people neglect to critically think about their physical environment, and acknowledge the implications infrastructure has on excluding people out through physical barriers.  It is with that observation she argue’s colored people of low income  are implicitly excluded from particular areas through the placement and location of infrastructure. To understand how Schindler views the purpose behind the placement of architecture it is key to understand the definition of her theory, Schindler defines her theory of architectural exclusion is  “placement and location of infrastructure that physically separates and inhibits access” (Schindler 19).  Through her theory she  analyzes how infrastructure can regulate architecture through law, but how placement of public areas ultimately shapes the lives, experiences and behaviors of individuals. She places an emphasis on infrastructure’s role and impact on society, which is often overlooked by society. In fact, critically thinking about one’s physical surroundings is  Individuals must be aware of the power of placement of architecture and how its power implicitly dictates human behavior. Schindler emphasized the importance of policy and legislation, but ultimately she believes that architecture is more powerful than law in regards to urban development. Schindler provides the example of park benches with arms rests as being a simple aesthetic design, however separating the seats through the use of arm rests prevents homeless people from lying down and taking naps (1934).

Courtesy of Upbeat Images, This is image is associated with Schindler’s example of applying her theory of architectural exclusion to park benches. The arms rests provide a division so a person won’t have the ability to lay down horizontally. 


Spatial Manifestation: Why Does It Matter Where We Live?

REPORT SHOWS HUGE D.C. HEALTH DISPARITIES, MAKES RECOMMENDATIONS. Digital image. Https://mccourt.georgetown.edu/news/Health-Disparities-Report. Georgetown University McCourt School of Public Policy, n.d. Web. 6 Feb. 2017.

“‘Think globally, act locally’ is a watchword for this attitude: it does not matter where you are a citizen; just be one” (37)

In the United States not` all towns or cities are thriving, as certain metropolitan areas thrive and prosper socially and economically others are experiencing a decline. If the USA is considered a leading power or the American Empire, why isn’t every corner of the empire thriving? Why are some areas deemed amicable,

hospitable, safe, while others are deemed to be dangerous, at risk, etc? Disparities exist both throughout America and spatial manifestations at the metropolitan level. Fleming describes the situation in a comprehensive fashion where in a metropolitan area diversity exist as a mosaic. For instance:

“Young affluent white families with children live in one part of the metropolitan area, older white couples without children in another, the old in yet a third. Lower- and middle-class whites live over here, professional singles over there, blacks in that direction, Hispanics in this.  And these groups are only growing farther apart, with the upper classes increasingly wealthy, the working and middle classes increasingly stressed, and the disparity between them growing” (33).

Our own capital reflects: the exact definition of spatial manifestations. For instance in Washington D.C. there are 8 wards, and over 600 different zip codes, and with a simple transition from ward 8 to ward 3 the disparities can be exemplified through life expectancy or accessibility to food markets. These details of space are subtle, but ever minutia of society matters. Fleming stresses we as human beings constantly discriminate spaces and different places, and factoring the Us and Them attitude to whose space is affiliated with whose space. This phenomenon spatial manifestation are both true at a local and global level. Fleming argues, “despite the apparent geographic neutrality of the new world economy, characterized by nothing so much as the increased mobility of jobs, capital, goods, and people, some places are flourishing, while others are not” (Fleming 32). Washington D.C. serves as a microcosm for the United States, because if you enter certain areas in the Northwest in Ward 5 or enter Ward 3, the disparity is immediately evident. Geographically Ward 3 is considered a sub-urbs while, Ward 5 is heavily populated and dense. Even though it is the same city the needs of a citizen in Ward 5 and Ward 3 also present disparities, and this is where the disparities in ideologies present themselves. Fleming  associates an individual’s geographic with the political landscape, which he claims is  “increasingly fragmented and polarized”(Fleming 37). Both the political and geographic landscape present disparities, but one common thread is the politics that surround both landscape promises of “mobility, multi-positionality, and globalization” (Fleming 37). Essentially Fleming believes it does not matter where one is a citizen, but to simply be one.


Works Cited

Fleming, David. City of Rhetoric: Revitalizing the Public Sphere in Metropolitan America. Albany, NY: SUNY, 2009. Print.