community / culturemaking / reading

Community, cultural, development

On community development:

“Relative poverty within a country has a massive impact on issues related to social exclusion. Setting this within an understanding of world poverty and environmental justice gives insight into the ways in which the problems lie with disproportionate levels of consumption in Western societies which the earth cannot sustain. Therefore, a critical approach to practice has to be based on the notion of a redistribution of wealth. This is the only way that divisions cleaved by poverty, which affect the life chances of people within nations and between nations, can be reduced. Globalisation’s acceleration has resulted in what Reason (2002) calls the twin global crises of our times – social justice, with the most vulnerable of the world exploited for the greed of western markets, and sustainability, with ecosystems that sustain our world being destroyed by exploitation and pollution. In these ways social justice and environmental justice become inextricably linked, and naive notions of increasing the levels of consumption of the poorest in our society will simply accelerate these crises for the world as a whole. …

At the same time, a parallel but related process of anti-intellectualism is encouraging uncritical practice. So, while we are failing in ‘being critical’, social injustices are escalating as globalisation creates more complex oppressions within and between nations. In these ways, the issues of the world at large become issues for our communities.”

From ccd.net, the hub for community cultural development practice in Australia:

“Communities are organic entities that evolve through internal and external influences, and are complexly shaped by socio-cultural dynamics. Ccd projects and programs may work with developing community where people need to work together, to share ideas and values, to foster cohesion, and to build a sense of belonging.

Our identities as individuals and as members of communities are bound in complex ways to a sense of place. Ccd processes that focus on our relationships to the environments that we use and share, are sometimes referred to as placemaking. Places can also be internal places – or spaces – the way we relate to ideas of home, identity and belonging.

Placemaking projects and programs are active in urban, regional and remote communities, and may also be useful in working with communities that are fractured or working with identity issues.”

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