A Research Method Of Walking Essay

A Research Method Of Walking Essay

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Walking has become an important research method that presents sociologists an opportunity to experience the urban landscape. Walking allows one to broaden the mind, and while experiencing the uniqueness of one’s environment. Unlike other methods, walking allows the researcher to interact with the people in the specific urban area and establish connections with them (Shortell, 2016). Before entering this exercise of walking as a research method for urban practice, the contemplation of my ability to endure the amount of walking needed for this research is disconcerting. Even though I’ve lived in Queens (which is considered the city) for the entirety of my scholastic years, the convenience of driving since my sophomore year in high school has allocated me in a reliance state of being. So, the concern of not having the endurance to complete this research has affected my choice for my regional site chosen. The neighborhood for which of interest would be one that is easy to get through with an immense amount of social activity to keep me distracted from my health defect of stamina deficiency.
During my fieldwork, I selected the Bronx as my area of focus. In the past, the area was a rich neighborhood that has become a deprived one over the years. I walked for 45 minutes, giving special attention to the buildings in the area. I took notice of a single Starbucks store along the streets. I expected to see more Starbucks stores only to realize that there was only a single one in the region. I had an opportunity to observe the landscape carefully and to interact with the people. I recognized that many of the buildings were old and needed renovation. The residents had neglected most of the green spaces, a factor that exhibited negligence on ...


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...per connection to the urban space and to recognize cultural and interpersonal aspects that were taking place (p. 12). I also made observations of social behaviors among residents of different races. I appreciated the public space at a deeper level and noted the need for regeneration of the urban space. I was able to experience how race, gender, social class, and ethnicity structure social life in an urban area. I gained first-hand experience of how walking can provide rich data in the exploration of urban spaces. It was easy to observe different aspects of life as one walked along the streets and used such observations to enrich data acquired from other research methods. Through the interaction with people I encountered, I realized that walking presents a favorable opportunity for conducting interviews regarding the people’s perceptions towards the urban landscape.

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