Places and spaces 1

Both places and spaces define a geographical location, however they differ in meaning.  Space is considered more as an abstract thing with no substantial meaning.  It is an open location that has no social connection or values to people.

On the other hand, place is more than a location, even the size of the location does not matter.  It can be as small as a corner in a room or as big as earth itself.  A place has a history, memory and meaning and people perceive it in terms of self-reflection that includes experiences and achievements and also in terms of social integration such as symbols and values.  A place can be seen as a space that has a meaning.  When people get familiar with a space and link it to their personal experience and social values and symbols; it becomes a place for them.

“Place is security, space is freedom:  we are attached to the one and long for the other” – (Yu-Fu Tuan, 2001, p.3).

The course material mentioned Robert Harding Pittman, a German-American photographer who has undergone a photographic project called “Anonymization”.  Pittman spent 10 years working on this project where he travelled around the world photographing the loss of culture and the destruction of the environment caused by development.  Pittman captured suburban and urban sprawl across the globe in Las Vegas, Germany, United Arab Emirates, South Korea, Spain, France and Greece.  Pittman documented the construction boom and development in these countries that are imposed without regard to the local culture, environment or climate.




Bibliography / References:

Bierend, D.  A Disorienting Survey of Suburban Sprawl, From Dubai to L.A.  [online].  Wired.  Available From:   [Accessed 24 June, 2017].

Lens Culture.  Anonymization:  The Global Proliferation of Urban Sprawl   [online].  Wired. Available From:[Accessed 24 June, 2017].

M. Hunziker, M. Buchecker, T. Hartig.  Space and Place – Two Aspects of the Human-landscape Relationship  [online]. Available from: [Accessed 24 June, 2017].

Malou van Woerkum (2012).  Space vs. place [online].  About Geography.  Available from: [Accessed 24 June, 2017].

Smithson, A. (2015).  Robert Harding Pittman: Anonymization  [online].  Lenscratch.  Available From:   [Accessed 24 June, 2017].

Yi-Fu Tuan.  Space and Place:  Humanistic Perspective  [online]. Available from: [Accessed 24 June, 2017].




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