Eng 102 Paper One

Zachary Mack
Professor Quist
English 102-07
February 13, 2018
The world is a very bordered world. Borders are built and crossed everyday whether they
are physical borders and non physical borders. Borders affect our everyday lives and sometimes
they are often not noticeable. Borders are not always a negative thing, we need borders in todays
society for many different reasons. Borders are a clear indicator of another individual's space and
crossing the border of another may make that person feel uncomfortable. A person could even
have a border that they put up for themselves mentally. Borders being crossed can trigger a sense
of territoriality in an individual. Despite the way that individual may feel about their border
being crossed, borders are still important for a bigger picture and a clear understanding between
territory. For example “people walk through you the wind steals your voice”( Anzaldua 56). In
this example the author uses personification to show that borders have been crossed and as a
result he felt stepped over and voiceless. In this sense borders have been crossed in a bad way
because it broke an individual's sense of territoriality. This has been repeated many times
throughout history and there has been wars over borders and territory that two opposing sides felt
like they owned. Although if there were never any borders people would invade others privacy at
will. The use of borders gives the ability to have privacy and mark boundaries. This sense of
borders make people feel safe and gives a sense of comfort.
A benefit of borders are they are a clear indicator or marker of where territory is and who
owns what's inside those borders. If there are physical borders present there is no question about
what areas are restricted to cross, it is physically there to see. For example “ a factory gate is
intended to restrict access of certain people, whereas the entrance of a retail store is designed to
lure people inside” ( Diener and Hagen 16) . In this example Diener and Hagen are using
different examples to show how borders rely in the power of the people. If we did not regard
borders to be borders then space would be invaded and there would be no such things as borders
or territory. Personal space would not be guarded or restricted along with personal belongings,
there would be no borders or no indicator of the owner. This is why we need borders despite the
challenges that borders could bring as well. Borders create many challenges in different ways.
One way a border can be a challenge is a mental border. It may feel like no matter what there is a
barrier that cannot be crossed mentally when in reality the border is set by the individual
themselves and there is no physical boundary set. Another way that a border can be a problem is
when two sides feel a sense of territoriality over the same territory. In this conflict the problem
has to be solved before one can put a border up because both sides already have mental borders
over what one may feel control over. Although having borders can be a bad thing they can
prevent future problems from happening and be the mediator before a problem occurs.
Many different borders are crossed everyday and according to Hagen and Diener people
are what gives borders meaning in general. Borders only exist if the individual respects it as a
border and believes it is a barrier. For example “ We are geographic beings’ for whom the
creation of places, and by consequence the process of bordering seems natural. But borders are
not ‘ natural’ phenomena; they exist in the world only to the extent that humans regard them as
meaningful. Here Diener and Hagen are explaining how borders are not natural but instead they
are created by people. In this regard people are what give borders power in any way. Even
physical borders, although they are physical if people do not give them power or respect borders
as something to keep them out or a way to come in then that wall or border has no power.
Every border is not physical some can be non- physical language can be and non physical
borders that separates people. “I know this for a fact, because when I was growing up, my
mother’s “limited” english limited my perception of her.” In this example Tan uses english
language as her tool to connect a large group of people together and to relate to people. Also she
references the english language and the border that she put on her mom as a child about her
english being “limited”. Just by thinking that her mothers language was limited she
unconsciously put a border on her perspective on how she saw her own mother. Although she
had love for her mother the border that she set between there relationship was a unconscious
border. She did not know she was limiting the relationship between her and her mother but she
was by putting her mother in a category and talking about her english skills. Borders can be both
good and bad in some cases although they are essential for protection against others and
guarding personal possessions. Borders are necessary and their advantages outweigh the
disadvantage of them. They are a clear marker or indicator of a individuals space and they are
used as a sense of protection.
Works Cited
Anzaldua, Gloria “ To live in the Borderlands Means You “ Border Crossings, Catherine
Cucinella, Bedford/ St. Martins, 2016, pp.55-58.
Diener, Alexander C. and Joshua Hagen. “ A Very Bordered World. “ Border Crossings,
Catherine Cucinella Bedford / St. Martins, 2016, pp.15-23
Frost, Robert. “ Mending Wall.” Border Crossings, Catherine Cucinella Bedford / St. Martins,
2016, pp.12-14
Karaim, Reed. “ Building Walls.” Border Crossings, Catherine Border Crossings, Catherine
Cucinella Bedford / St. Martins, 2016, pp.32-34
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