Marlboro College

NewsPress Release: 11/13/00Panel Discussion on "Senses of Place"

MARLBORO, VT Students in the Marlboro College anthropology class "Senses of Place" will discuss their fieldwork projects documenting the individuals, the families and lore of the town of Marlboro and its surrounding communities at the Marlboro Campus Center on November 13 and 14 at 7 p.m.

The panel discussion will be about how people in the Marlboro area perceive and make use of the space around them. The class, taught by Marlboro College anthropology professor, Carol Hendrickson, is an introduction to anthropological field methods. It addresses ideas coming out of existing literature on the construction of self and place and answers questions coming from students doing field work in town.

According to Hendrickson, "the exploration is based on the premise that everyone lives someplace, but how people conceive of their environment differs according to particular cultural senses of place. Their perception of their surroundings and themselves as part of their environment is affected by how they are raised, their experiences and their habits." The panel discussion will focus on how people relate to different places, how they manipulate the material world, and ultimately how different places reflect and help create people's identities.

Over the course of the semester, students interviewed residents of Marlboro and the surrounding areas on a wide variety of subjects. Students are doing projects on such topics as life off the power grid, haunted places in Marlboro and gender relations at home. Other projects involve the topic of how emotional space in family life overlaps with the actual physical space it occupies, and the Brattleboro School of Dance as a social transmitter of dance values through repetitious movement, among others.

In recording Marlboro lore, students are in some respects contributing to the narrative tradition of the Marlboro area. At the end of the semester, all class projects will be given to the Marlboro Historical Society. The panel discussion is free and open to the public, and will take place in the Campus Center, which is fully accessible. For more information, please call (802) 257-4333.

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