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Forums > Social Discussion > Class Distinction - What do you think of it?

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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction

Total posts: 13215
Posted:I was looking through the photos of my UK trip the other day when I came across these photos of a park in Bath. My family took the photos because to us, the concept of an unfenced area that was prohibited to the general public is one of the most obsurd things ever. There is nothing to indicate that it is "exclusive" apart from the sign; it is a park out in the open, just raised slightly higher than the section where the plebians are allowed to sit. We actually walked on it until we saw the sign. Only one person was sitting on it; the rest was going to waste and we thought it was sad that such a lovely area came with restricted access.

How do UKers feel about the fact that they are made to sit below other people and being excluded by an arbitrary (money?) line that someone has drawn?

Why do the people who "subscribe" to these lawns feel the need to separate themselves from the rest of the people?


Non-Https Image Link

Note how it is raised, therefore the upperclass are literally above the regular people?


Non-Https Image Link

Close up of the sign


Non-Https Image Link

Just thought I'd throw this one in as well.


i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:I'd have sat on it...

...and if asked to leave, I would have feigned bafflement.

As for the visitors/tradesmen thing, it does make sense as they're likely to have different business and might be greeted by different people.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

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Location: without class distinction

Total posts: 13215
Posted:Except that that photo is taken of a residence, not a business.

And yeah, I wanted to go and run around on it but I got a telling-off from my parents! ubblol


i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:Well if it's a residence, then it's their lawn, so it's not class distinction, it's property.

And a residence of that size would probably require a business-sized effort to keep it running.

I do hope it's not a single-family home.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction

Total posts: 13215
Posted:Nah, it's not the one big house. It's a series of terrace houses.

i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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Pyrolific
BRONZE Member since Jan 2001

Returning to a unique state of Equilibrium
Location: Adelaide, South Australia

Total posts: 3289
Posted:I guess if they are paying for it as a private lawn they feel others shouldn't get the use of it free?

by that thinking nobody should have private anything (a concept which I dont completely disagree with) if I'm not using my lawn out the back of my house other people should have a right to come in and use it - its going to waste..right?


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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction

Total posts: 13215
Posted:But what I'm also asking is why they feel the need to have this private lawn for only them.

Perhaps don't think of it as why they want to keep others out; but why they don't want to join in with the others?


i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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Spanner
BRONZE Member since Feb 2003

Spanner

remembers when it was all fields round here
Location: in the works... somewhere...

Total posts: 2790
Posted:It's not a park: it's always been the residents' private lawn, so I think it's fair that they're as entitled not to allow non-residents upon it as much as I'm entitled not to allow non-residents into my own - far humbler and overgrown biggrin - garden.
There is also the public 57 acre Royal Victoria Park nearby.

Crescent Lawn Company
This seems to suggest, as I suspected from the age of those signs, that subscription has been discontinued - the visitors/tradesmen bells are almost certainly also a remnant from a bygone era.

This is a nice example of similar gardens in my town which are open to non-residents but which I consider it a privilege to be able to make use of, not a right, especially considering the years of work it's taken to restore, manage and sustain them smile


"I thought you are man, but
you are nice woman.

yay,

:R"

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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

Insert Champagne Here
Location: without class distinction

Total posts: 13215
Posted:People are yet to answer my question about why they wouldn't want to hang out on the lawn a metre 2 feet below their little exclusive lawn with the regular people though.

i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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Kyrian


Dreamer
Location: York, England

Total posts: 4308
Posted:perhaps they do?

Keep your dream alive
Dreamin is still how the strong survive

Shalom VeAhavah

New Hampshire has a point....

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Dom
BRONZE Member since Dec 2001

Dom

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Bristol, UK

Total posts: 3009
Posted:Why? Because it can be quieter, more easily controlled and higher than the common riff-raff wink Seriously, I can see why it's an attraction to have a house with private land out front with some distinction. Commons in the UK can get pretty packed, so having an area less packed for your use is nice to have.

And it's quite common across England, especially London, to have private gardens. The one near wear I work occasionally opens it's gates for lunch time and lets the public in, but they don't if they're having a private function and I'm completely OK with that.

I live in block of flats with small private gardens, lots of roses and a couple of fountains with benches; which is a rarity in London. I like knowing that I can go and sit and read a book in peace & quiet, it makes it a bit more of a special place.

And the bells are leftovers from an older age when more people had servants. They exist for the same obvious reason many businesses, bars and hotels have a back entrance for deliveries. A lot of these houses probably still have wiring in place for 'call bells' to signify to the servants quarters that they were needed. These days houses are small enough to be able to shout for a beer smile


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animatEd
BRONZE Member since Aug 2004

animatEd

1 + 1 = 3
Location: Bristol UK

Total posts: 3540
Posted:The building is probably really old, and has been renovated recently for the new use of many houses?

the tradesmen bell... Remnants of a bygone era for sure. probably the 40's, 50's or 60's, if I were to hazard a guess. Definitely the last century... I used to work in a hospital that looked very much like that building, that was a listed building.

or it could be a joke, and the tradesmen's bell just isn't hooked up. wink

the lawn height thing: The building is probably really old, and was once a luxurious single dwelling. It's probably also a listed building, which means that no changes can be made to the outside walls or the grounds. the step in lawn was probably for the sport field that many rich landowners used to have, a cricket field, or a croquet lawn, or some other stereotypically british game that the rest of the world look at and think 'WTF'? Also, it was a popular design feature on rich people's properties.

As for the private lawn, that'll be there for the residents today. Like in some communities, there is a communal pool, but you wouldn't want anyone coming and using it...

There used to be a huge class distinction thing going on in England. There is still LOADS of evidence of it in various parts of the country, usually the areas deemed 'posh' or upper class. I currently live in one of these areas, where just to live here is considered a status symbol. There are still many rich nobles with their country estates etc. many of them with royal bloodline, or titles bestowed upon their family by royalty. One of my ex girlfriends is in one of these families... her father being an Earl, she has the title os Lady. her little sister (At the time only 8) was also 'lady' and her little brother was 'Lord'.

Bath is a very historic city, and this property was probably owned by the local nobility.

Eeeep.. I've rambled.

What is the name of this building, out of interest? I might be able to find out some more about it...


Empty your mind. Be formless, Shapeless, like Water.
Put Water into a cup, it becomes the cup, put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, put water into a teapot, it becomes the teapot.
Water can flow, or it can Crash.
Be Water My Friend.

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Rouge Dragon
BRONZE Member since Jul 2003

Rouge Dragon

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Location: without class distinction

Total posts: 13215
Posted:Yeah I realise the class distinction thing within the UK in history which is why I was curious about what seems to be remants of it stil existing and how people felt about it.

Australians pride themselves on a lack of class distinction; historically everyone had to make their own way up to the top in a land full of hazards. To have an ex with a title just wouldn't happen here and is such a foreign concept to me!

I suppose to give you an example of how we view open areas as public spaces is that a few years ago, a rich businessman tried to section off an area that he thought was his (he did this at 3am to be sneaky) only to have the people then physically tear down the barricade because they didn't believe in such segregation of an open space.

Actually I think there are laws in my state at least that if something which was private property becomes acessible to the public, after 15(ish?) years it becomes public property and they can't claim it back.


i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

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biggins
SILVER Member since Sep 2002

biggins

member
Location: In Bed

Total posts: 165
Posted:@ Ry, dammit. you beat me to it



humans like to make themselves feel better about about themselves by giving themselves special things that the Plebs/Proles/Commoners cant access. it happens everywhere in someway shape or form altohugh today it manifests itself in the differences



in pretty much all countries there is sections of the populace that look down on other sections within their society and these distinctions between groups are perpetuated by those with money. Europeans (especially, but not only) britain led the way and now you can see it and what it has created everywhere that was touched by colonialism. divide and conquer.



its one upmanship/i'm better than you. pure and simple. rubbish colonialism and laaaahdeedaaah thinking in its truist form.

EDITED_BY: biggins (1189334501)


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Dom
BRONZE Member since Dec 2001

Dom

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Location: Bristol, UK

Total posts: 3009
Posted: Written by: Rouge Dragon



Yeah I realise the class distinction thing within the UK in history which is why I was curious about what seems to be remants of it stil existing and how people felt about it.



Remnants? Don't be fooled by the hype, we're all about class here! The class structure is still alive and well in the UK, it's just got more complex.



I have to say that I totally disagree with biggins, who displays a common perception of class divides based on money, with the rich devising ways of making themselves tower above the rest. This totally ignores all the class divides that exist among many axes (plural of axis, not sharp things!).



Look around and you'll see people spending effort to make themselves distinct and separate from each other using fences, clothing, languages, beliefs, whatever to build a them and us. We all do, the want & need to be part of a tribe is a natural part of being human. It's how we treat those outside of our tribe that matters.



And to blame all this on colonialism! Sorry, but that shows a complete lack of thought and awareness of other social structures across history. Social structures and hierarchies have existed as long as man has. Deal smile

EDITED_BY: Dom (1189338202)


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Spanner
BRONZE Member since Feb 2003

Spanner

remembers when it was all fields round here
Location: in the works... somewhere...

Total posts: 2790
Posted: Written by: Rouge Dragon


People are yet to answer my question about why they wouldn't want to hang out on the lawn a metre 2 feet below their little exclusive lawn with the regular people though.



Simlarly, they're no more obliged to answer that than I'm obliged to answer why I would rather hang out in my garden than on the pavement - I would tend to say "regardless of their size" but that does raise the interesting question of Countryside Open and MoD Managed Access, which I think is sensible, especially as it apparently opens up much of the coastline.

 Written by: Limits_To_Contest

What is the name of this building, out of interest? I might be able to find out some more about it...



Or you could just click the link in my post wink hug


"I thought you are man, but
you are nice woman.

yay,

:R"

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biggins
SILVER Member since Sep 2002

biggins

member
Location: In Bed

Total posts: 165
Posted: Written by: Dom



I have to say that I totally disagree with biggins, who displays a common perception of class divides based on money, with the rich devising ways of making themselves tower above the rest. This totally ignores all the class divides that exist among many axes (plural of axis, not sharp things!).

Look around and you'll see people spending effort to make themselves distinct and separate from each other using fences, clothing, languages, beliefs, whatever to build a them and us. We all do, the want & need to be part of a tribe is a natural part of being human. It's how we treat those outside of our tribe that matters.

And to blame all this on colonialism! Sorry, but that shows a complete lack of thought and awareness of other social structures across history. Social structures and hierarchies have existed as long as man has. Deal smile



yep, to be fair i agree. i was just getting on my high horse abuot the colonial thing cos of the piccies that are posted above.

i totally agree that there is more to it than that and that humans have always created these class systems (hindu caste system anyone) and i guess you could say that the hierarchy thing is almost an animal instinct. I do however believe that europeans traveling and trading from the 17th/18th (and later) century played a massive part in the creation of social structures that are evident today in many places (<cough> america/australia/NZ </cough>. i'm not saying that class distinction didnt exist pre colonil times, just that it was refined and exported.

*rose tinted glasses*


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Gnor
BRONZE Member since Mar 2003

Gnor

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Location: Perth

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Posted:If they had a fence up instead of a sign?

Can you see the top lawn form the bottom?


Is it the Truth?
Is it Fair to all concerned?
Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?

Im in a lonely battle with the world with a fish to match the chip on my shoulder. Gnu in Binnu in a cnu

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Yakumo
SILVER Member since May 2006

Yakumo

veteran
Location: Oxfordshire

Total posts: 1237
Posted:For places that have some kind of staff to attend to those separate 'tradesmen' bells, it's simple, hit the tradesmen one and if it's answered your met with someone who expects you and will be courteous, hit the other and frankly don't expect to get anywhere with your attempted sale or whatever. They've employed someone so they're not disturbed by uninvited callers, or delivery men themselves, and will likely be unresceptive (at best) if you don't show consideration for their wishes.

Mostly yes, they're leftovers from an age old time where the lord or lady of the house don't expect to attend to the door when the chimney sweep comes calling.


As for the lawn it's mostly just a declaration of ownership, quite likely you could sit or play on there all day even not as a resident (unless there was a mass hoard of you), but they're simply making sure you know they have the right to shoo you from it if they feel they need to.
They're quite likely not fussed but want to keep lawn wear down to a minimum. (yeah plenty of people are still really anal about their lawn care, but considering how much some spend on it I'm not entirely surprised)


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animatEd
BRONZE Member since Aug 2004

animatEd

1 + 1 = 3
Location: Bristol UK

Total posts: 3540
Posted:Biggins, so you're saying that a majority of the world's Class structures stem from England?

No.

Yes, we had a LOT of colonies. owning about 1/4 of the globe at one point.

But England didn't start the whole class thing.

It has existed for millenia, since civilisation began, with egyptians, romans, greeks, in fact, any empire that had a leader was subject to a class system. Muslims hold men higher than women still to this day. In asia, certain things are frowned upon, and are just unheard of being done.


Empty your mind. Be formless, Shapeless, like Water.
Put Water into a cup, it becomes the cup, put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, put water into a teapot, it becomes the teapot.
Water can flow, or it can Crash.
Be Water My Friend.

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Kyrian


Dreamer
Location: York, England

Total posts: 4308
Posted:Incidentally, the phenomenon of closing off areas for private or select group use seems to be a very deep part of english culture, most people in the UK and the US have touched on some of it in their history classes. I imagine most people don't even think about the sign.

In the US it has happened more recently, and it has also taken a different and less strict path, possibly because of the larger amounts of land.

I find it interesting that Australia still has a very firm belief in land open for use- any other aussies have thoughts on this as well?

If I had more coherent thoughts on other countries I would say them, but admittedly they are limited observations.

And I have been to a private garden shared by several flats in Kensington, and its is amazingly peaceful and comforting. I don't have any problem with someone wanting some space for themselves- and I don't have as much of that here, so I'm reminded often what I'm missing.


Keep your dream alive
Dreamin is still how the strong survive

Shalom VeAhavah

New Hampshire has a point....

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Gnor
BRONZE Member since Mar 2003

Gnor

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Posted:Land is still private in Australia..if its privately owned

Is it the Truth?
Is it Fair to all concerned?
Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?

Im in a lonely battle with the world with a fish to match the chip on my shoulder. Gnu in Binnu in a cnu

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Kyrian


Dreamer
Location: York, England

Total posts: 4308
Posted:Surely the land in front of the building is privately owned as well? I suppose I've missed the point on rogue's post form reading too fast...

Keep your dream alive
Dreamin is still how the strong survive

Shalom VeAhavah

New Hampshire has a point....

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Dom
BRONZE Member since Dec 2001

Dom

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Bristol, UK

Total posts: 3009
Posted:It's interesting that you mention the NZ and Australia as they've got very different histories, origination from white stock within which I see less social divides (putting aside the massive race problems we all have). In NZ especially I've noticed a lot smaller social divide than most other places, maybe due to their culture and small population?

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Birgit
BRONZE Member since Jan 2005

Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh

Total posts: 4145
Posted:So Rougie, would you let anyone use your phone on your account and bill while you're not using it, and is that a class phenomenon? Or drive your car when you don't need it?

The guys owning that lawn very likely pay council tax for the property including the lawn and have their owners meetings twice a year where, if the garden gets badly damaged, everyone has to pay their share to get it to look nice again. Sure it would be nice to share everything, but apart from others most likely taking advantage and leaving their rubbish all over the lawn, it just doesn't happen much. I'm probably sounding all capitalist now wink


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Gnor
BRONZE Member since Mar 2003

Gnor

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Perth

Total posts: 5814
Posted:I think part of Rouges point is that its unfenced and so appears public. If there was a dividing fence from the unwashed masses it would be more obvious

Is it the Truth?
Is it Fair to all concerned?
Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?

Im in a lonely battle with the world with a fish to match the chip on my shoulder. Gnu in Binnu in a cnu

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Birgit
BRONZE Member since Jan 2005

Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh

Total posts: 4145
Posted:Yeah, but... isn't that why the signs are on? So that people know it's not public? Because the owners might prefer sitting on a nice lawn instead of a fenced area?

"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half

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Gnor
BRONZE Member since Mar 2003

Gnor

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Perth

Total posts: 5814
Posted:Small signs like that are probably unrealist as an effective " get off my turf wink" method. To me it does look like public property. But thats with no idea what the building is. Most govt buildings here seem to be public property in their open space. Although saying that many schools have a no trespassing after hours policy.
Here if you dont want someone on it you fence it.
Open space here tends to be public space.


Is it the Truth?
Is it Fair to all concerned?
Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?

Im in a lonely battle with the world with a fish to match the chip on my shoulder. Gnu in Binnu in a cnu

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robnunchucks
BRONZE Member since Jul 2004

robnunchucks

enthusiast
Location: manchester uk

Total posts: 363
Posted:How do UKers feel about the fact that they are made to sit below other people and being excluded by an arbitrary (money?) line that someone has drawn?



i think your reading this all the wrong way its not a class thing at all.



its not a arbitary (money line) any more than somones front lawn is.



this is basicly those houses front lawn but instead of it been devided into little sections for each flat its one masive comunal front lawn shared between all the residence.



and just as you wouldn't want random people showing up and playing in your garden without permision these people want the same its there private space.



they haven't put a fence up because its impractial and would be an eye sore and the fact its slightly higher than the rest of the park isn't because of perceaved superioirty its just so that there is some clear boundry between the park and there lawn.

EDITED_BY: robnunchucks (1189366005)


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biggins
SILVER Member since Sep 2002

biggins

member
Location: In Bed

Total posts: 165
Posted: Written by: Limits_To_Contest



Biggins, so you're saying that a majority of the world's Class structures stem from England?





dude, get a grip and read what i wrote properly.



No. i am not saying that at all. Get a grip and read my second post properly. Also, allow me to point you in the direction of a definition of colonialism



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colonialism



all i am saying is that because they got it together and did a whole heap of ship building and travelling and trading **EUROPEANS** spent a lot of time pottering around the globe in the 17th/18th centuries exporting their brands of colonialism (e.g. spain - south america, portugal - africa, holland - the far east and the UK and rance were having a merry time of it killing each other and enslaving people in heaps of other parts of the globe). What i am saying is that i reckon that EUROPEANS did a lot to export their class structures during this time and that this had wide ranging effects on "modern" history.



 Written by: Limits_To_Contest

Yes, we had a LOT of colonies. owning about 1/4 of the globe at one point.



But England didn't start the whole class thing.



It has existed for millenia, since civilisation began, with egyptians, romans, greeks, in fact, any empire that had a leader was subject to a class system. Muslims hold men higher than women still to this day. In asia, certain things are frowned upon, and are just unheard of being done.





yes yes, and **as i said** i agree with you and even hinted at the fact that i thought that making class distinctions was an animal trait thing that pre-dated Homo Sapiens.



so in answer to your post NO i dont just think that english invented and exported class distinction around the world.

EDITED_BY: biggins (1189370354)


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Invader Xan
SILVER Member since May 2005

Invader Xan

Your friendly neighbourhood mad scientist
Location: Over the hills and far away

Total posts: 479
Posted:What do I think of class distinction?

Frankly, I think it's b*llocks.





But there's a difference between class distinction and preferring people not to run around your lawn (or worse -- let their dogs use your lawn as a toilet).



If anything, I think it's rather nice that they don't feel the need to surround themselves with a big fence and shut out the "riff raff"... Makes a refreshing change, frankly. wink


"Love the art in yourself and not yourself in the art."
--Konstantin Stanislavisky

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