On Durham and identity
bowilliams at gmail.com
Thu Apr 5 11:52:34 EDT 2007
"It's a tiny college
town that *isn't* out in the middle of bumfuck nowhere. "
But in another way it *is* in the middle of bumfuck nowhere, which
plays a huge role. It's one of the artistic meccas of the Southeast.
For instance, a large factor in the shittiness of Boston's music scene
is the proximity to NYC, which is a much bigger and more attractive
magnet for the musically-inclined. The Triangle acts as the magnet
instead of being subject to a more dominant (if less proximate) arts
On 4/5/07, grady <grady at ibiblio.org> wrote:
> I dunno, I bet you I could find a lot of other cities of 200,000 with
> really *really* crappy music scenes. I think we forget how remarkable
> the music culture in the Triangle in general, and in Chapel
> Hill/Carrboro in particular, is, in comparison with other cities around
> the country.
> What does Chapel Hill have that makes it special? It's a tiny college
> town that *isn't* out in the middle of bumfuck nowhere. In larger cities
> like Raleigh (or Durham, for that matter, given the comparative size of
> Duke vs UNC or NCSU), the influence of the student population on the
> overall culture is diluted.
> But most small college towns are just that, small towns, whose only
> reason for being is the college. Lot of transition, hard to keep
> anything worthwhile going for a long time. Chapel Hill has that mix of
> lots of students, plus jobs (in the Triangle as a whole) for the
> students once they graduate.
> Only for the past few years, a lot of those settling-down graduates have
> gradually been drifting away from Chapel Hill, towards Chatham, or
> Durham. There's a fun poll for us to conduct: Hey, Durham musicians,
> where did you go to college?
> Getting back to what Rossi said, I think what will be more interesting
> even than watching the arts scene in Durham as Durham gentrifies, is
> watching the arts scene in Chapel Hill as it struggles with its own
> gentrification issues. Go check out this thread on orangepolitics.org
> about Culture Shock: http://orangepolitics.org/2007/01/culture-shock/
> (I don't mean Duncan, who posted a half-dozen times to that thread; I
> mean the rest of y'all)
> Duncan Murrell wrote:
> > Census 2000
> > City of Durham : 201, 726 population, 1,976.4 people per square mile.
> > Town of Chapel Hill: 48,715 population, 2,466 people per square mile.
> > Free Republic of Carrboro: 16,782 population, 3,753.7 people per
> > square mile.
> > Durham: Median income, household: $41,160; median income, family:
> > $51,162; median income, men: $35,202; median income, women: $30,359;
> > per capita income, city: $22,526. 15% of population below poverty
> > line.
> > Chapel Hill: Median income, household: $39,140; median income,
> > family: $88, 200; median income, men: $50, 258; median income,
> > women: $32, 917; per capita income, town: $24,133; 21.6% of
> > population below poverty line.
> > Carrboro: Median income, household: $33,527; median income,
> > family: $47,330; median income, men: $30,099; median income,
> > women: $31,090; per capita income, town: $21,429; 19% of population
> > below poverty line.
> > What's remarkable isn't that Durham has a burgeoning and supportive
> > musical culture, but that we're talking about such a thing being
> > remarkable in a city of 201,000 people.
> > d
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