Politics > Political Territories > Personal Territories:L2 & L1

Personal Political Territories (L1&2)

Within local government are two further natural social territories that are personal: the household and the neighbourhood.  Each of these gives rise to its own characteristic form of political organization—even though this is not usually labelled as government.

The Household (L1)

A household is the elemental form of political organization: its social territory corresponds to the home. A household is an organizational-territorial form—not synonymous with a «family», whose members may be dispersed over many territories.

Households differ greatly in countries in accord with the culture—sometimes they contains a single person, often many inhabitants which may be family &/or non-family (e.g. lodgers, friends). In some agrarian regions, the extended family lives in a compound containing several small buildings.

ClosedLaying down the Law

Neighbourhood Governance (L2)

Historical arrangements, evolved from religious division of a country and the need for a local church/temple where the priest/monk knew his flock, created small L2-territories. Modern society, especially in dense urban areas, often forgets what neighbourliness means.

A neighbourhood can be defined as that territory within which members of a household can walk about, in which they know numbers of people by sight, and in which children can play. Immediate necessities are obtained from local businesses, who know their customers by sight and name. A large block of apartments could regard itself as an L2-territory.

Terms for Neighbourhoods include:Closed Locality, Parish, Precinct, Quarter, Suburb, Ward, Community, Zone, Town, Village.

A neighbourhood (outside a city-centre) typically includes many useful services like:Closed ●church ●convenience store ●small market ●laundry and dry cleaning service ●photocopy and Internet café ●small restaurant ●take-away dining ●hair-dresser ●newsagent ●small bakery ●primary school.  The mix will vary with the country and type of town or district.

Political organizations, often called «councils» or «associations» typically form to ensure that social interaction within neighbourhoods is satisfactory. There should be a minimum of inter-personal friction so that movement around the neighbourhood is comfortable and safe within the framework of provision by local government (&/or higher tiers).

By-laws can be introduced and powers to raise money indirectly via local government taxes for certain facilities (e.g. street-lighting) are possible. Such decisions may be enforceable by law. The neighbourhood typically exerts pressure on local government to take account of its special features e.g. in regard to road safety or historical points of interest.


Originally posted: August-2009; Last updated: 15-Nov-2010




All posted material is part of a scientific project and should be regarded as provisional. Visitors are encouraged to think through the topics and propositions for themselves. Copyright © Warren Kinston 2009-2016.
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