Our Integral City Core Team, Community of Practice (COP) has been convening Zoom conference calls about once per month for five years now. In between calls we are in frequent email exchange about our various projects and interests. After the recent publication of Book 2, the theme of “place” was provoked by Cherie Beck, sharing how she was exploring Washington DC as a “world city”. She remarked on the potency of her visit to the Washington Monument (the obelisk that so often symbolizes the city) – how she could sense the Spirit of the City of Washington DC in this place.
This conversation has since sparked action, inquiry and reflection on the topic of “place” in our COP. Our cogitations in turn, reminded me of an important footnote to Book 2 (Integral City Inquiry & Action: Designing Impact for the Human Hive, p.xxvii). Ian Wight had remarked that we should,
“consider a place/Place/PLACE differentiation similar to [Mark DeKay’s] nature/Nature/NATURE elucidation. [We should Move beyond] locating ‘place’ in just the physiosphere and/or the biosphere … locating ‘Place’ as – additionally – in the noosphere … thinking of PLACE as all quadrants, all levels (including the theosphere? (see p. 327 in DeKay’s Integral Sustainable Design). … similarly situate/differentiate your sense of city/City/CITY … There are other integral interpretations of place and placemaking for folks who might want to explore these, if/when their integral appetites have been whetted. … these interpretations strive for even greater, more expansive, notions of wholeness… city/City/CITY wholeness in your case [the whole-making, at the core of both placemaking and wellbeing for myself, is the terrain around which we both might eventually find common ground].”
As a result, of our online discussion and the comments seeded by Ian, we share the following series of Blogs exploring the many phenomena of place, Place and PLACE. I think the Guest Bloggers contribute perspectives about Placecaring and Placemaking from all 4 quadrants – subjective, intersubjective, objective and interobjective.
And yet, I don’t think we could say our exploration is by any means exhaustive, or even definitive – but rather conveys a delicious titillation through all our senses of discovery, play and amazement in the arts of Placecaring and Placemaking.