About Me

Currently a graduate student at the University of South Carolina, I study urban sociology and inequality. Originally from Western Pennsylvania, I am particularly interested in how changes in regional economic structures effect stratification and mobility opportunities, particularly for the working class. I also participate in the scholarship of teaching and learning.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Urban Image #1

This will be the first in a series I am going to call "Urban Images." In this series I'll share a picture or two of something that relates to my interests and reflect on it a bit.

I took this photo when was driving around Butler, PA with my dad when I was home over winter break sometime around January 2011.  Butler is the county seat of Butler County.  It is an aging mill town. This is one corner of a neighborhood in Butler known as the Island, one of the poorest in town.

I like this image because it looks so very rust belt.  The trees are bare, the vegetation on the ground is orange and dry. You can tell its winter. The houses are built close together, and close to the street, and they are aging as well.  I did not plan to take this photo, but as we drove past, I had to get out of the car and try to capture what I was seeing.  It looks like a seen out of the movie North Country or something.  This image makes he terrain look a little too flat, though. It almost looks like you're in the Midwest, but really, you are not.

Also, I like this image because of where it's at. You can't tell, but behind me is the County Courthouse, and the Main Street downtown area. Maybe 3 or 4 blocks up the hill behind me.  The jail, which is attached to the Courhouse, was expanded just a couple of years ago, and the thing, built on the hill, sort of looms over this side of the Island.