« Action is a reaction to environment | Main | Presentation / Documentation Styles »

I am a master of the natural world.

In overcoming the oppositions of the natural environment we have successfully created a predictable “second nature.? The obvious impact of our second natures is that we have removed ourselves from the environment that previously shaped our cultures. Around the world cultures have developed in response to their natural environments. The Inuit igloo, Navajo hogan, and tropical house of Southeast Asia are representations of this response. These dwellings are crafted from materials that are local, natural, and can decompose to become nutrients.

“Each of these three dwellings is built with maximum efficiency in mind; thus each is sensitively, even directly, attuned to its setting in the natural characteristics of the climate.? (36 Norman Crowe)

These dwellings show equal sensitivity to the cultural life styles. Modern dwellings maintain this reflection of culture only to highlight our shortcomings. Currently we pride ourselves on our ability to “overcome? the natural environment when in reality we are simply ignoring it. Our vast scientific comprehension of frameworks, clockworks and phenomena has not helped us to “master? the natural world; it has only helped us isolate ourselves. The modern anonymity of structures represents our removal from the natural environment.

The built environment has made me a master of the natural world. However, I am dependent on technological innovation to manipulate my surroundings and minimize work. I am removed from the climate and do not need to work in order to maintain a comfortable indoor environment. I hardly need to move to get a drink or go to the bathroom, water is brought to me and waste is taken away. I am unaffected by nightfall because my lights are always on. I rise to an alarm clock and spend ninety percent of the day indoors. To eat I do not need grow crops or raise animals. When I am done with “work? I do not even need utilize reason, I can simply watch television.

I am an American.
I am purposeless.
I am depressed.
I am overweight.
I am a master of the natural world.
Im addicted to the built environment.

Crowe, Norman. Nature and The Idea of a Man-Made World. Cambridge,
Massachusetts: The MIT Press, 1995