Are We Losing Our Sense of Place in Life: Persuasive Essay

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Memory as a form of constructing reality is a mechanism for the formation of not only an individual but also a social experience. The amount of knowledge about the past of the social group in which the individual finds himself is one of the most important factors of his social identification. The identification function of social memory is embodied in the desire of modern society to clothe the past in symbolic and ritual forms. 'Places of memory' exist because of the threat of destruction of memory, supporting the feeling of continuing the story. As applied to the social context, ‘place’ is the accumulator of a person’s subjective experience and denotes the localization of his personal spatial sensations. The sense of place is determined not so much by the physical parameters perceived by a person, as by the certainty that each place has its own special, only inherent, local value.

Recreating the continuity of past, present, and future, memory turns out to be an important way of forming and preserving a collective and personal identity, i.e., feelings of belonging, forcing an individual to recognize personal traits in a particular community with its own value system. Certain social groups, the members of which receive a similar experience by virtue of their belonging to one society, set a specific set of memories to their participants. At the same time, the exchange of memories between representatives of various local social groups creates social memory. Thus, the amount of knowledge about the past of the social group in which the individual finds himself is one of the most important factors of his social identification. Memory is an indispensable condition for the socialization of the individual. And in this case, socialization itself can be understood as a process of familiarizing an individual with different in content and meaning volumes of memories, both group and individual.

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The concept of ‘social memory’ in the humanities of scientific knowledge appeared in the first half of the 20th century. By the beginning of the XXI century, it turned out to be analyzed in sufficient detail and became a pretext for polemical interdisciplinary discussions. One of the most important provisions in this area was the thesis of identity (social, cultural, historical and political) as a product of social memory. In moments of personal crises, spiritual experiences, moral fatigue, many people think about how to change their lives, how to find their own way and meaning of life. There are no unequivocal answers to such questions, and there cannot be. Every person's life is unique and multifaceted. There are situations and conditions that people regard as loneliness, alienation of oneself from other people: it can be self-isolation, both emotional and social. Emotional isolation is the result of a lack of attachment to a particular person; resulting in anxiety. Social isolation is usually expressed in the absence of an accessible circle of social intercourse and is accompanied by a sense of alienation. Such emotional states as despair, melancholy, depression, self-pity, unbearable boredom are most often associated with loneliness. Experiencing a keen sense of alienation entails communication, which can be called deficient and defective. At present, among people, isolation, estrangement from the rest of humanity is quite common, affecting the life of a particular person, his relationship with other people. Thus, alienation is one of the problems of mankind that needs to be overcome. The world is filled with ideas, desires, and aspirations of people. When we look at talented actors, directors, musicians, athletes, successful businessmen and politicians, it seems to us that it is from such people that we should take an example, it is their life that should become a guide. Searching for oneself in life most often means professional purpose, which, besides social benefit and recognition, brings moral satisfaction. A place in life is a significant skill in any business that deserves respect when others consider you to be an undoubted professional and authority. But to a greater degree, it is also a state of joy from the work being done, confidence and comfort in personal relationships.

Many successful people in the professional field, even reaching certain career heights, do not experience happiness – the daily state of spiritual joy. This happens because initially, they chose the wrong path due to ignorance or rejection of their own preferences. In contrast, many were unable to achieve anything, because for too long they chose their direction by trial and error. As a result, such a waste of moral and physical strength led to emptiness, a sense of inferiority and complete disappointment in life.

The goal in life - such a concept many of us are frightened by their significance and unattainability. The rest of the people simply never thought about the problem of finding the meaning of life. Usually, these are infantile personalities, for which everything has already been decided, and this suits them completely - in this case, there is no need to search for the purpose and purpose in life. This condition may vary depending on the specific situation and what the person has experienced. It happens that at a young age he had a clear idea of his desires and aspirations, but over the years he lost it under the influence of a stressful situation, an experienced shock or environment, when the social environment suppresses a person, not allowing him to go beyond certain limits. The theme of combining a successful career and family values is one of the main ones when it comes to life goals and the meaning of life. Psychologists provide guidelines for planning the day and the allocation of time between family and work. Such advice can only be taken as a possible option, and not a guide to action.

Thus, we can say that we have lost the sense of place due to alienation. Aloofness manifests itself as a feeling of powerlessness in the face of everyday problems, a sense of the meaninglessness of what is happening; separation, cooling and breaking with the closest environment, falling out of social ties. This state is accompanied by apathy and self-denial, a rejection of friendliness and companionship, distrust of the sincerity and selflessness of people, a lack of warm cordial communication. Even if the majority of friendly relations still persist, the person often and gradually reduces contact. Aloofness as an experienced feeling and state becomes alienated from real people, their concerns and lives. The core of alienation is anomia, which is defined as a state of disorganization of a person, resulting from its disorientation. The reason for such disorientation may be a social situation in which the norms of conflict take place and the person is faced with conflicting demands or a situation of lack of norms. Relationships between people become superficial. The superficial nature of human relationships encourages many to hope that they can gain the depth and power of feelings in individual love.

Works Cited

  1. Buttimer, Anne. 'Home, Reach, and the Sense of Place'. The Human Experience of Space and Place. (1980): pp.166-187.
  2. Glassberg, David. Sense of History: The Place of the Past in American Life. Univ of Massachusetts Press, 2001.
  3. Eyles, John, and Allison Williams, eds. Sense of Place, Health and Quality of Life. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2008.
  4. Hay, Robert. 'Sense of Place in Developmental Context'. Journal of Environmental Psychology. 18.1 (1998): pp.5-29.
  5. Mazumdar, Sanjoy, et al. 'Creating a Sense of Place: The Vietnamese-Americans and Little Saigon'. Journal of Environmental Psychology 20.4 (2000): pp.319-333.
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Are We Losing Our Sense of Place in Life: Persuasive Essay. (2023, September 15). Edubirdie. Retrieved July 19, 2024, from
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