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While I'm writing the next batch, this is a sort of interesting… - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
While I'm writing the next batch, this is a sort of interesting article on how urban life affects the brain. In short, it has negative effects on attention and memory, but the social concentration spurs innovation.
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lilacsigil From: lilacsigil Date: January 9th, 2009 06:20 am (UTC) (Link)
It is sort of interesting, but I would be interested in whether *dangerous* natural settings (with lions or snakes or crocodiles) affect the brain - wouldn't that also be a high-awareness environment? Walden Pond and Central Park are a pretty limited comparison. And if inner city dwellers are more likely to eat high calorie food, they're the least likely of any Australians to be overweight, because they have much more physical activity, due to public transport access, so maybe they need some high calorie input? Chocolate cake in itself is not a bad or stressed decision, article dude!
gentlespirit From: gentlespirit Date: January 9th, 2009 11:00 am (UTC) (Link)
I was thinking some of the same things. A very interesting premise, but also quite limited in what it examined.
trinity_clare From: trinity_clare Date: January 9th, 2009 06:23 am (UTC) (Link)
I've done my homework outside, weather permitting, for years, so it's nice to know science backs me up on that.

I wonder if this urban vs. natural issue has any correlation to seasonal affective disorder (also a problem of gray vs. green).
From: (Anonymous) Date: January 9th, 2009 07:42 am (UTC) (Link)
Ha... I know a lot of people get down and depressed when it gets grey, but I'm the opposite. I'm at my most happy and energized when it's overcast and cool. When it's hot and bright and sunny, I generally feel pretty miserable if I go outside, so I stay in a lot. It feels like the sun drains me. Of course, I'm of nearly vampiric paleness, so that's probably not too shocking. And being as I now life in LA, it means that I don't go outside during the daytime all that often, and usually sleep during the day (leading to sunlight sometimes making me more sleepy than darkness). ... Which doesn't really help with the vampiric feeling.

- Severely Lupine
ksellers From: ksellers Date: January 9th, 2009 06:28 am (UTC) (Link)
That makes so much sense. I've come to realize that as much as I hated living in a small town, I can't concentrate living in a city - and I don't even live in a big one, just a college campus and its sprawl. I've told myself many times that I want to live in a city, once I escape school and enter the real world, but lately I've been trying to think how I can use my degree and live in a small town, out in the country somewhere.

And it's an interesting coincidence that my favorite place to go study is the Forestry building (which I have absolutely no reason to enter), where there are panoramic pictures of Indiana forests around the mezzanine.

But I should probably go to sleep, and stop rereading your amazing stuff, so Fern, you're awesome, and I can't wait to read more!
matril From: matril Date: January 9th, 2009 03:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
Very interesting. I've never been a big fan of cities; I kind of figured it was just because I'm an introvert and I hate, hate noisy crowds. I do question the "we-just-can't-help-it" explanation for splurging on unneeded/unhealthy items, though...I'd like to think it's possible to exert some degree of self-control even when your brain is tired.
From: (Anonymous) Date: January 9th, 2009 07:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hah, so now I can blame my inability to focus on the lack of a forest to take walks in!
And I have another reason to dislike towns and crowded places (which is already a problem because I go out far too little).
One day, one day, I will have my cottage in the countryside, and then I'll be able to focus like never before!

~Hermione Stranger, dreaming~
(Deleted comment)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 11th, 2009 02:00 am (UTC) (Link)
I think that's most of the point of the article--not so much "Don't live in the city" as "Here are the bad effects, and we can do something about it."

There are a lot of rural health pathologies, not just obesity.
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