Growing narrative, conviviality, and security: community and gardening in the North Shore of Massachusetts
Proctor, Dylan Atchley
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Growing Narrative, Conviviality, and Security: Community and Gardening in the North Shore of Massachusetts is an ethnography of the Highlands neighborhood of Lynn, Massachusetts. In this thesis I argue that the efforts of this community to combat the ills of their neighborhood seen through the lens of a community garden rely on three key factors. The first is their reliance and sharing of a narrative that reminds fellow community members of the difficult points in their past, but with the message that there is always a possibility of a brighter future. The second aspect is the reliance on the shared moments of celebration that the neighborhood actively supports and engages, which instill the bonds of community in an otherwise disparate, and multicultural setting. Finally, the narrative and celebration of community would not be sustainable if the community did not also provide the structure for security upon which the neighborhood can continue to improve their communal and social wellbeing. The lessons learned from this community are useful to understand how a multiracial, multicultural urban site can turn around their violent past in order to create a livable space.