COMMUNITY & URBAN PLANNING OFFICE
DESCRIPTION OF SERVICE.PDF
FINDING ALBANIA ON THE MAP
TRAVEL & INSPIRATION
CHINA & TIBET
BALKANS / PEACE CORPS ALBANIA
JAPAN / ARCH. SEMINAR
*UNDER ARCHITECTURAL EXPERIENCE
china & Tibet
OF MOUNTAINS AND SKYSCRAPERS
UPON VISITING CHINA AND TIBET FOR TWO MONTHS ONE MIGHT SURMISE THAT EVERYTHING IS VERTICAL—AMASSING TIBET COULD NOT QUENCH THE thirst FOR VERTICALITY IN A COUNTRY THAT ALREADY HAD MOUNTAINS—THE PLAINS HAVE GIVEN WAY TO HIGH RISES AS CHINA AGGRESSIVELY WORKS seemingly TO PROVE ITSELF largely of itself.
CHINA SHOULD NO LONGER BE CONSIDERED A COMMUNIST COUNTRY, VISITING IT IT BECOMES CLEAR THAT IT IS MORE CAPITALISTIC THAN ITS so-often copied counterpart, THE USA. CHINA IS AN OLIGARCHY THAT HAS THROWN MOST OF MARXIST IDEOLOGY TO THE WIND WHILE ITS RULING ELITE OPERATE UNDER A THIN COMMUNIST veil TO MAINTAIN order, THEIR PLACE, AND POWER.
VISITING CHINA ONE MAY FORGET THEY ARE IN A COMMUNIST STATE—THOUGH IT IS OFTEN OMNIPRESENT, particularly IN PUBLIC FACILITIES LIKE BUS AND TRAIN STATIONS AND PLAZAS WHERE THERE IS AN extraordinary command for order.
This order is amplified when one reaches Tibet, where one is forbidden to take pictures in much of the city because of police presence. In all sensibility it is China that declares Tibet to be occupied by its own actions. Tibet is expected to conform to maintain order. At the same time the Chinese world is overwhelming Tibet with its own population while the central government does everything it can to homogenize this land with the Han's culture.
Leaving politics aside, China is a fascinating, sheerly veiled, and becoming a greater force to reckon with. perhaps it is like an alligator waiting in the pond for the right time to assert itself, as described in the art of war.
Travel is awarding for two reasons: to experience cultures intimately and the wonderful friendships it fosters. Eric Salmon and Fan Qian were wonderful companions on this trip. Their kindness offered Ralph Shinogle a personal insight of China with with the compliment of their good company. Certainly, the trip would not have been nearly as enjoyable without their presence. And for this much gratitude is to be noted.