All Things Urban
Images captured and shared by
Mr. Clarance Nowlin, VUU Graduate, Criminal Justice Major
Ms. Alisha Williams, VUU Graduate, Psychology Major
Mr. Michael Harris, House of Pix
First described by psychologist Philip Zimbardo and later formulated by political scientist James Wilson and criminologist George Kelling, the Broken Windows Theory proposes that seemingly insignificant, minor, and deleterious environmental surroundings can potentially trigger more significant destruction, deterioration, disorder, stagnation and chaos among the community members. Essentially, “If a window is broken and left unrepaired people walking by will conclude that no one cares”. Nowlin and Williams suggest that environmental urban conditions in a state of decline, disorganization, and disrepair can impact a child’s psychological development and interfere with a normal growth trajectory. Their proposal prompts an interesting inquiry at minimum.
The Center expanded the project initiated by Nowlin & Williams and collected more photographs that reflect the “urbanicity” of the City of Richmond. While we know children can mature, grow and develop under harsh conditions, it is our responsibility mitigate the harshness where possible; increasing the positive living space and enriching the urban ecosystem for the children who reside in it.
We hope this Photovoice experience will inspire you to make that commitment and contribute.
Absorb the images of this Photovoice, “All Things Urban” and allow it to inspire what your contribution will be.
The Photovoice experience allows individuals to (1) reflect on their community’s strengths and concerns through photographs, (2) initiate critical dialogue and knowledge about important urban environmental issues in a variety of arenas (i.e., work, civic, home, church, families), (3) carry this knowledge to critical stakeholders (i.e., policymakers, advocates, political leadership) for action and change.
This Photovoice experience was inspired by two VUU graduates, Mr. Clarence Nowlin (Criminal Justice) and Ms. Alisha Williams (Psychology) who led a professional poster presentation at the Center’s 2013 Urban Child Symposium. This presentation was entitled, “How can we use the Broken Windows Theory to Inform Young Urban Youth that the Community Cares”.