Children's Gate: Of a Home in New York by Gopnik (2008)
The work of Gopnik (2008) entitled "Through the Children's Gate: Of A Home In New York" relates a story about a man that worked for the city and during his employment took a set of aerial photographs and underground schematics and "turned every block, every highway and every awning -- everyone in all five boroughs! -- into neatly marked and brightly colored geometric spaces laid out on countless squares. Buildings red, streets blue, open spaces white, the underground tunnels sketched in dotted lines…everything in New York was on the map: every ramp to the Major Deegan Expressway and every abandoned brownstone in the Bronx." (Gopnik, 2008, p.3)
Of Mental Maps
Gopnik states in his work that it is not possible to make a life in New York absent the composition of a private map of the city in the minds of those residing there. The maps (private ones) are always "detailed, always divided into local square and always unfinished." (2008, p.4) The private mpa is such that "turns out to be as provisional as the public one -- not one on which our waks and lessons trace grooves deepending over the years, but one on which no step, no thing seems to leave a trace." (2008, p.3)
III. City Maps and the Cartographer
Gopnik states of the map of the city that was held by one only five years ago, that the same map "hardly corresponds to the city we know today." (2008, p.4) According to Gopnik the monuments in New York "even…fade from your mental map under the stress of daily life."(Gopnik, 2008, p.6) Gopnik describes suddenly one day discovering "the old monument looking just as it did the first time I saw it, the amazing white ziggurat on a city block worth going to see." (Gopnik, 2008, p.6)
IV. The Unfolding of Maps in Society
The work of Adam Gopnik, is a collection of essays that focuses on the theme of Existentialism and how each individual has their own personal perception of existence in their mind, represented in Gopnik's work by mind maps. Because of the ever-changing landscape of the City of New York, which Gopnik relates as a living and breathing place, the cartographer in the story is never able to complete what he conceived in the beginning to be a 'perfect map'. As such, maps are generally undergoing shifts and transformations that render the former 'authenticated' or true in the present moment map because as time progresses that which is true one moment may or may not be true in the following experiential moment. Just as the literal maps created by the cartographer soon become outdated the mind maps of the individual soon undergo the selfsame type of change rendering the prior map created in the mind of the individual useless. Gopnik specifically states are the following in regards to the human mind said by Gopnik to be "…constantly changing thus he can never really know what will happen because what he knows is constantly changing." (Gopnik, 2008) Constant change is a predictor of the future outcome through the effect of the change now on the outcomes of the future both literally for the Cartographer and as influenced in the world by the mental mapping of individuals in the world. Maps developed by a cartographer represent mankind's attempt to keep up with what is a progression of change continually moving forward and never being static in the material world nor in the mind of individuals mapping their reality.
. What is presented is such that indicates that the future map of the real or physical world cannot be absolutely predicted due to the variables represented by the individuals and ultimately their mind mapping of the present world environment. Each individual would be characterized by gender, age, sexual orientation, educational attainment, physical attributes, their associations and that which served to influence them politically and where the religion was derived by each individual human being. The variable characteristics of the human being of which only a very few have been noted are numerous. The changes in society due to the variables in the human being are driven outwardly in the physical world by the mapping of the mind.
VI. Examination of Subterfuge
Subterfuge utilized in the initiates of human mental mapping sessions is sometimes intentional and yet other times it is not. Families use such subterfuge in their disagreements with other family members as their mental mapping of the world around them is not exactly mirrored and oftentimes are in complete and utter conflict with one another. One example stated involves a guy named Luke as his
"rites of passage' are "rolled out for our edification, too, that he isn't the font of heartwarming family fare that his sister is. When he and his pal Theo spend an afternoon shooting pool in the badlands of SoHo, Gopnik is one happy pappy. "I beamed with pleasure and relief. They had played pool! Pool hustlers! What could be better than learning how to adjust a cue to strike a ball into a pocket, as compared to another meaningless two-hour session in front of a screen doing mindless hand-eye-coordination games? They were not druggishly indulging in a cynically engineered entertainment. They were in touch with Americana, with history!" Martha, mistress of derision, sinks another fang into her husband's fun. "Wasn't pool sort of like the video game of nineteen-aught-three?" she snarks. "It sounds like instead of letting them do mindless crap, you're getting them to do dated mindless crap." Chalk up another one in the Can't Win department." (Gopnik, 2008)
In a later chapter Gopnik and Luke bond over baseball, guy stuff that they can share without mom's editorial interjections killing everything. When Luke opts for pinstripes, his father does likewise." (Gopnik, 2008) Gopkin relates the impact that even small choices when replicated, and in this study were a son and father who both bond by choosing to wear pinstripes. (Gopni, 2008
VII. Analysis of Gopnik's Work
The work of Knopf states that Gopnik's work is vain however, Wolcott holds that Adam Gopnik is one that "must have been put on this earth to annoy" and if so "mission accomplished." (nd) However, the deeper than observed superficial appearing facts in these essays holds in their common and simple declarations hints of how actions impact future outcomes and through their affects during the ever marching realm of time serve to impact forever the outcome of the human experience. While it would not appear to be important that these two men collectively wore pinstripes, the time of history in which they both in the City of New York made these declarations and took action. It was their determination to rebel against the Mind mapping if approached from a non-benevolent view, for the purpose of creating a human mind map convergence would be able to exert great influence over how society developed as more in numbers began mapping their minds towards achieving political or economic objectives.
VIII. Collective and Intentional Mindmapping
Therefore, the importance of these mind mapping techniques used in society and one's world become very important because armed with this information it would be possible to join other individuals with similar mind maps and to effectively hone down the precise objectives for achievement and then modify some of the mental mapping or if you will to bring these individual maps into alignment with others with the same like minds to create the support for a shifting of the outer world transformations that map society around the individual meshing into their lives and altering the future material world through exertion of collective mapping of the future world and even as it is under development.
IX. Simplicity in Demonstration of the Concept of Mapping in Cities and Society
This type of mindmapping is illustrated in very simple narratives within the essays of Gopkin. For example the story is told of a father in New York City who is on the neighborhood watch for many years and relating the watch is not really needed now in this specific location within the City of New York adding that this individual still felt a responsibility to his community and was conducting the watch dutifully. However, the individual this narrative decides that he sure would like something from the warmly lit coffee house in the story and reasons that if he 'were' in a union that it most certainly would authorized by the Union that employees and even volunteers be allowed to take breaks from their duties. At any rate this individual proceed to the coffee house and wound up in line behind a man who was inebriated and extremely rude to coffeehouse staff. The individual on neighborhood watch stepped forward and motioned his radio at the man until the man felt he might be pushing his luck and left. The individual in this story is highly impressed with his performance…