chapter  1
23 Pages

Introduction

WithKeith Diaz Moore

This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book addresses the substantive area of theoretical inquiry and development. It suggests that Environment-Behavior research can possess utility for environmental designers through the acceptance of the assumption that places, as do human actions, have purposes or goals associated with them. The book examines how Amos Rapoport's approach to culture-environment studies shaped his own inquiry into urban public spaces and the relevance of such an approach in traditional cultures facing environmental conflict. It explores a discrete aspect of meaning, the mnemonic function of the built environment. The book illustrates the utility of dismantling the broad concept of meaning into three sub-divisions: one that guides behavior; one that conveys social expectations; and one that produces an emotional response to a deep symbolism. It outlines an ethnographic approach to Environment-Behavior research that emphasizes sociocultural processes.