In Suburbia: A Photo Essay by Robert Cuevas
“In Suburbia”

Suburbia, an environment in which all of its classes, qualities, and ideas can be both easily distinguished, and blurred, verging on the point of invisibility. There are those who love it, hate it, avoid it, and those who dwell in it. This essay is an analytical yet simple visual dissection of the given environment, in a sociological context. The goal is to achieve a better understanding on this place as a whole, and to understand its many issues.

“Important News In Suburbia”

There are those who support the idea that suburbia is a place where everything is “perfect” and correct. Other common ideas regarding this place deal with the political, social, and economical hierarchies that have been established, and usually stem from the opinions of those who don’t live in this place. It is normal for people who have seen it at a glance to generate negative thoughts about what they have seen.

“A New Generation In Suburbia”

The reality is, there is a point in which the suburban setting can have a negative effect on those who are grounded in it. Different from a city setting, there is a lack of balance in the social, political, and economic classes, ultimately causing people to be extreme in what they believe, and how they act. There is also a heavy sense of pride that is developed among opposing parties within this social group, as they believe there is no reason to find common ground. This can cause future generations to grow to either fear or despise different people, in other social situations and different environments.

“Young Woman In Suburbia”

There are many different results of the actions performed by those who consciously and subconsciously choose to conform to the suburban lifestyle. This in itself isn’t a negative thing. The negativity is exposed when people choose to turn the suburban lifestyle into something that makes it harder for a community to connect and learn from each other. Adolescents raised under the negative side of this lifestyle find themselves searching for something different, and in the end, are left to develop their own opinions on this society which they are apart.

 “Buildings In Suburbia”

It is valuable and healthy to recognize the flaws in your community. It is a way to start change, wherever you are. I am apart of a suburban community, which is why I chose this as my focus for this photo essay. I often find myself saying things regarding the “boring” nature of my community and how I never want to shoot here, but I have realized that there’s a lot more to this environment that you can’t see at a surface level glance. I encourage you all to do the same, wherever you might be.

“War Memories In Suburbia”

The inspiration behind this essay is mainly based on my reaction to the notion that you will only find important news in the grittiest, lowest places. This idea challenged me to look for a story in my area, and really pushed me to take a crack at a plain, but mysterious subject that has been a popular topic ever since the establishment of this type of environment. If you would like to respond to this, feel free to comment with your thoughts and opinions on this society, or any other environments and social situations. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to share my thoughts with you all, and hope you have enjoyed this not so hard hitting exposé on suburbia.

© Roberto Cuevas, 2012

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Anna Cox