A deeper look at The Wade King Rec Center

There are many places and studies you can look at to further the understanding of the word “place”. After reading Lynn A. Staheli’s “Place”, I had decided to look at all the different meanings. Staheli’s article defines place as a physical location, place as a cultural or social location, place as a context, place as constructed over time, and finally place as a process. Staheli explains that place as a cultural and social location is, “[the] metaphors draw on familiar and commonsensical ideas to explain complex social relationships in away that highlights the centrality of space and place to those relationships”. The WWU rec center as a social and cultural place showcases the type of people tobe there. At the rec center are the sort of people who care about living healthy lifestyles and overall care about their health. Some just beginning to show care and others putting in immense efforts. The place itself is built for this purpose: to better student’s health. The social and cultural place of Wade King rec will also be different from any other gym because it is for college students and located on a college campus. This means that the social and cultural context will be mostly if not all college studens. Further than that, college students who feel that their health is important to them. Looking at the rec through a cultural/social lens allows you to see the internal beliefs and cares of the people which inhabit it. Stahili also elaborates on place as a process: “…this conceptualization highlights the interaction between processes operating at different scales- from the macro-economy to the individual- into the processes of place”. The rec center as a process in which we change it and it changes us, expresses the true purpose and atmostphere of it. If there weren’t the college students that care about their health, there would be no rec center and if there were no rec center, college students would have a lot harder time finding other means of health and exercise. The more things the rec center offers such as yoga class or kickboxing, it changes its social context and the more different types of people to come in changes what the rec center is socially and culturally ultimately showing that both conceptualizations of place work hand in hand.

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