A Fish Would Never Notice The Water


September 10, 2003


Room 202


Sociology


When thinking upon how to best describe the sub-culture of my home community I found myself dumbfounded. For Chalfont has no big cultural feeling. However after reading Chapter 2, " A fish would never notice the water", I realized I was this fish! Living in between two small suburban and proudly historical towns, Doylestown and Chalfont, had not been the most culturally entertaining. Yet being here for nearly seven years I feel that I can adequately describe their sub-cultures. Not that my earlier life was in a much different community, I have lived my entire live with in the bounds of suburban Philadelphia, with the same language, beliefs, values, norms, behavoirs, and material object from former generations.


The majority of those of who reside in these towns [Doylestown and Chalfont] are either "upper middle" or "middle class". While the rest are a hand-full of "capitalists" and of course "middle class". With such a broad collection of "classes" one might be lead to believe these two towns are culturally diverse, however it is quite the opposite. My town, or rather my world with in the larger world of the dominant culture, is made up of the common folk of America. As much as I hate to admit it, I am one myself working hard and just trying to surpass my claimed "class". The reality is that the US is a capitalist society, meaning "we the people" follow the urge to succeed in life. Success and competition is what American culture is all about, and my community is no different.


Doylestown and Chalfont are mainly populated with white "middle upper class" families, your average "privileged" American. Doylestown and Chalfont are very expensive areas in which to live. Unfortunately this is what keeps my little community so undiversified. Housing costs in Doylestown and Chalfont does vary, but is mostly expensive. Plots of land can be more expensive than the homes, which leaves most "working class" people out of the picture. As the law of the land sits, or as Iíve been told, each community legally needs to have low income housing somewhere in its zip code. In Chalfont and Doylestown we have one trailer park and several apartment housings, yet even these are expensive, compared to surrounding communities i.e.: Warminister. No matter how you put it Doylestown and Chalfont are looked at as wealthy towns.


Then of course is the phenomenon which any and most suburbs take part in. I call it The Phenomena Of Suburban vs. Urban. Many of those who reside in Doylestown and Chalfont have chosen to live in the suburbs yet work in the city; i.e.: lawyers, CEOs and general white-collar workers. While many of those who live in the city come to suburbia to work; i.e.: Nursing Homes and hospitals. The meaning of this I will never know.


In a nutshell Doylestown and Chalfont are two relatively Caucasian, conservative communities. Despite minuscule differences and problems I live in your typical suburban Philadelphia community. You should come around, we have got plenty of pharmacies!


[As much as I dislike class distinction I feel I must, in order to adequately describe the sub-culture of my community. I divided the classes with the help of the "Model of the American Class Structure." By McGraw-Hill, Inc. which was provided in class.(no pun intended!!)]