Tiny switches without losing a beat from the chipmunks of Down East to the superballs of down Chelsea for a rousing game atop the dining room table, where remnants of the centerpiece are all that's left of the grand table setting of Easter Sunday. We're still feeding off the fat of the larder, though, with a dollop of leftover Sweet Potato aux Peeps to top off a fresh batch of Beef Strogie for supper this evening.
"In order for science to proceed, and for new models to replace old models, we must first hold to a principle that allows us to release what we previously held to be true, in order to substitute something new," writes the proprietor of The Power of Doubt, helping us answer our dear blogfriend amba's challenge to our recent post critiquing the fear-society-lite atmosphere in the climatologist community, where to dissent is to be relegated to the fringes of polite society. Amba sees moral equivalence where we see a stark contrast between, on the one hand, all-too-human scientists' quest for honor and riches among their politically correct fellow travelers in the scientific, political and media spheres and, on the other hand, individual researchers engaged in a lonely quest for scientific truth:
I don't know, Sissy. Look to the animals. What about all those polar bears drowning?
I think there's as much of a herd instinct operating among conservatives who feel compelled to pooh-pooh global warming as among scientists who feel compelled to "promote" it. In both cases, it's the way to be noticed and honored by one's peers.
While we appreciate her nod to our oft-cited "importance of being noticed" explanation for so much of human behavior -- see below the fold for the original article in full, finally scanned and converted to editable type and available online for the first time -- as well as our "look to the animals" rule of thumb, as we wrote in our response in the comments,
A clever and well written riposte, amba, but not all behavior is honor-related, even among polar bears. Sometimes a cooling trend is just a cooling trend . . . Four drowned bears have been found. The rest is extrapolation, with a helpful assist from a breathless media.
It is about the smug and self-congratulatory groupthink of conservatives, among whom the password for admission to the club is to knee-jerk pooh-pooh human-caused climate change. As in this post and comments at Sisu (a blog I love and learn from, by the way), this often takes the form of congratulating themselves all around on how superior they are to the alarmist, anti-progress (read anti-business), human-hating groupthink of liberals and their pet scientists.
Beyond the fact that we are not conservative, no way, but, rather, libertarian Darwinian, we have consistently blogged about the horrors of groupthink, whether of the left, right or in between. In Galileo's day, it was the Inquisition of the Roman Catholic Church that forced an independent scientist to hold his tongue. In our day it's most often the left, whether in politics, academia or the media, that can't tolerate "new models to replace old models."
Dr. Sanity explains it all in psychological terms that are more than just a river in Egypt.
The importance of being online: Peter F. Rowbotham's "The Importance of Being Noticed" is available in the extended entry below.
The Importance of Being Noticed*
Peter F. Rowbotham**
The contributions in this book are presented as a mark of respect to
Philip Wagner. This fact in itself raises some not unimportant
questions. What exactly is the function in society of reputation and
honor? And is that function peripheral or central to the understanding
of human behavior? It is the purpose of this essay to argue that honor and respect are fundamental to an understanding of how society works. Such marks of distinction are environmentally expressed and have geographic consequences.
Wagner, himself, has favored in his own work on this theme the German term Geltung, a word which has no exact English equivalent, but which he uses to signify worthiness, respect, prestige standing, importance and validity (Wagner n.d.).
In making this argument, my objective is to say something of interest about geography, but I have not felt constrained, in journeying towards that goal, to draw only on material that is thought of as traditionally ''geographic.''
More broadly, I would like a view to emerge of a geography that recognizes the importance of competitive relationships in the ultimate construction of geographic worlds. l am thinking here not so much of the elemental spatial competition of land-use models and their like, but rather of complex selective processes which are not the same as but certainly akin to, biological evolution and market economics. It is these non-ideological and largely unpredictable selective processes, however characterized, which determine quite fundamentally what our geographic world becomes. Geltung is, in my view, one geographically significant expression of this competitive process at work.
*Person, Place and Thing: Interpretative and Empirical Essays in Cultural
Geography, edited by Shue Tuck Wong, 1992. Geoscience and Man, vol. 31, pp. 403-425. Dept. of Geography and Anthropology, Louisiana State University. Baton Rouge, LA 70893-6010.
**Dr. Peter F. Rowbotham is at the Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C. Tact 1 W5.
 Allied Thought
Ideas should get their legitimacy for what they are in themselves, but it is helpful in arguing for their significance, and in clarifying a position, to set out who one's intellectual heroes, or at least touchstones, are. Whether allies in fact or not, it is useful for the reader to know that they are thought of as such. Most fundamental to the tone of what is said here is the work of Ludwig Wittgenstein, particularly his Philosophical Investigations (Wittgenstein 1972). The focus of that complex work is on meaning and its contextual nature.1 Wittgenstein talks about language games and explains how meaning is derived from these as opposed to some fixed external referent. The impression one is left with is of a world of multiple rhetorics each with its own rules, its own frame of reference. And so it is with respect and reputation. They are best understood within a particular context, a distinct rhetoric or, as Rom Harré describes it, a moral order (Harré 1980). We search for honor in favored venues and in chosen social institutions. We avoid those places and those social groupings which inhibit our search, which do not advance, and may even set back, our moral careers. As Harré has pointed out,
recent studies of adolescence have shown many young people to have an almost obsessive interest and preoccupation with the maintenance of dignity and the careful scanning of the social environment for occasions and acts of possible humiliation (Harré 1980, 25).
Young people, in particular, choose their garb, their companions and their venues carefully.
The point then, is that there is not some overall ranking system. On the contrary, evaluative status can only be understood within its context. In this way we can understand the different moral orders of faculty and students in geography departments and, if I can be forgiven the juxtaposition, the moral order of the Hell's Angels. Indeed it makes sense to understand the latter as a system of honor that is an alternative to mainstream moral orders, a refuge in fact. Respect is obtained through acceptable displays, a recognizable form of clothing, certain badges and insignia of honor, appropriate body language, and a Harley-Davidson. One acquires no esteem, accumulates no Geltung in this moral order, by riding a Honda without a leather jacket, in a modern helmet and wearing a bow-tie. There are unwritten conventions by which we grade  social performances, and these conventions can be understood as part of identifiable moral orders.
Harré describes another institutional construction of an ''alternative'' moral career which is formed and sustained despite the opposition and hostility of other moral orders. Soccer fans in British society have been in the headlines in recent years for their mindless violence. How does one explain the trashing of railway carriages, the vandalism, the aggressiveness? According to Harré's studies these soccer hooligans are devalued in their mainstream careers.
They are those whose life in school has been a progression of humiliations and ritual affirmations of their voicelessness to society. It becomes apparent to them that in the official world there is no possibility whatever of their obtaining respect (Harré 1980, 321).
So they acquire the appropriate gear and advance what Goffman called ''moral careers'' by overcoming certain ''hazards," that is conventional trials by which public social reputation can be gained or lost. Student examinations are a parallel example. In each case moral careers are being advanced, although the actual gear and hazards are different in each case.
Goffman's (1959) seminal social interaction theory of co-presence is not unlike the latter work of Wittgenstein in its general approach.2 It focuses on meaning and communication and has a distinctly contextual orientation. The drama metaphor can be interpreted as a not-too-distant cousin of Wittgenstein's language games. Geographers, however, are more easily attuned to Goffman's thought, with its framework of perceptually bounded places in which a particular kind of activity regularly occurs. Within the walls of such social establishments, performers cooperate to present, often to an audience, a given definition of the situation. Goffman's worlds then are expressive worlds, worlds of display, and thus highly amenable to geographic analysis. They are also dressed-up worlds of honor and ''face,'' where ''there is no interaction in which the participants do not take an appreciable chance of being slightly embarrassed or a slight chance of being deeply humiliated. Life may not be much of a gamble, but interaction is'' (Goffman 1959, 243).
More specific concern with evaluative status is to be found in the work of Veblen (1899), especially his book The Theory of the Leisure Class. His three basic assumptions were that possessions are primarily significant as symbols of worth, that this significance  is based on comparison with other people in similar situations, and that self-respect is derived from the display of such symbols. Form and Stone (1957) later drew attention to the idea that Veblen's analysis best fitted an urbanized society, for in smaller, more traditional communities the past history and present position of everyone is fairly well-known and there is less reliance on dress, housing and other props to reveal one's status to others. It is in more fluid, more mobile societies, where we know less of personal biographies that conspicuous consumption, as well as other more subtle Indicators of status, becomes important.
We can think of Veblen as the philosopher of an expressive, status-conscious life-style, where cultural elaborations and display are all important. In one sense this position is in opposition to the work of Marx, with its practical and materialist orientation. The sort of elaborations of cultural life that Veblen focused on are, of course, far from being fundamental to a Marxian perspective. Harré (1980) explicitly makes this point and argues in effect that Marx should be turned on his head; that it is the expressive side of life as opposed to the practical which is the key to understanding behavior and social organization.3 As he puts it rather provocatively,
Marx said that it was in the nature of man to work. Not at least as the human race is presently constituted. It is in the nature of men to slip off to the pub to display their machismo, and of women to exchange anecdotes about the prowess of their children . . . The hammer and sickle are taken up with reluctance and laid down with alacrity for the pint pot and tea (Harré 1980, 8).
It is, however, not necessary to accept in full the distinction Harré makes between the expressive and practical order of life, to recognize the significance if not dominance of the expressive form in much of what we do. All of us can recall occasions where short-term ''expressive'' advantages are apparently preferred over long-term ''practical'' gains. Sometimes such preference can outweigh the value of life itself. Thus can we understand hari-kari, the practice in Japan of suicide by disembowelment when in disgrace, and the actions of the kamikaze pilots who exchanged their lives for honor. But these seemingly impractical actions, resulting from a search for honor, perhaps an obsession with the gaining of respect, may be part of a system which is not so impractical as it may at first appear. The upcoming discussion of motivation will touch on this point.
 The setting of Veblen's ideas as in opposition, at least in part, to those of Marx is useful for clarifying the position taken here. Ideas about status and respect can be used as alternative, or at least complementary, explanations of strikes and class struggle, of political extremism of right and left. Perhaps monopolies of status lead to revolution as much as, if not more than, economic deprivation (which is obviously not unrelated). This sort of explanation is, of course, not new, but it could do with further consideration. It is possible, as Harré (1980, 26) himself stressed, ''to acknowledge the fundamental truth that Marx perceived, namely the powerful role that the system of production in both its material and social aspects plays in social life,'' while conceiving ''its entry into and effect upon social activity'' in strikingly different terms. It is certainly very difficult to see how the extraordinary development of resources and environments in the industrialised societies has much connection with material need or practical considerations of mere survival. lf l may exaggerate the situation to make a point, our productive system seems at times almost frenzied. What is all this mass production and its corollary of acquisition for? Is there some simple pleasure principle at work or has it perhaps something to do with a 'frenzy of renown'' (Braudy 1986)? Veblen expressed the point succinctly when he wrote,
lf, as it is sometimes assumed, the incentive to accumulation were the want of subsistence or of physical comfort, then the aggregate economic wants of a community might conceivably be satisfied at some point in the advance of industrial efficiency; but since the struggle is substantially a race for reputability on the basis of an invidious comparison, no approach to a definitive attainment is possible (Veblen 1899, 25).4
There are, of course, many others who have written about the significance of social honor. Max Weber (1968) for instance defined status as ''every typical component of the life-fate of men that is determined by a positive or negative social estimation of honor" and offered it as a means of organizing social action which might or might not be distinct from class.5 But Weber and other writers make no major contribution to the arguments of this paper. Rather its basic position is derived from Goffman's idea of impression management, set in a dramaturgical model of stage and props with the geographical implications that flow from this. What is perhaps not sufficiently emphasized in Goffman's work are the reasons for the behavior he describes. Why are people concerned with managing impressions? What explains their behavior, what motivates them? An additional question that his work raises has to do with the morality of impression management.
Motivation and Morality
We live in a functional world, a meaningful world, where wheels seldom spin idly, as it were. One thing relates to others, and we seek meaning, understanding, and explanation from such relative contexts or frames of reference. But each event, of course, has many contexts, each providing a partial understanding, with some of these more useful than others. The Coriolis force in climatology is a good geographical example of this. Winds and ocean currents move to the right in the northern hemisphere away from the equator. Driftwood hugs the right bank of northern rivers. In the southern hemisphere all is reversed, and moving bodies go to the left. Yet there is in fact no force at all. These real effects stem from a particular frame of reference, the spinning earth. lf the frame of reference were ''still,'' moving bodies would appear to go in a straight line. In a sense, each change of reference (and there would seem to be no limit) changes reality itself.
It is a matter initially of judgment which framework serves best, although in the long run these things work themselves our through trial and error and differential survival. In the case of human behavior, and the construction of reputations in particular, it seems to me that a biological frame of reference is fundamental. It is, however, not my intent in this paper to do much more than allude to this. Harré's position on a biological connection is quite different. He is puzzled by the issue of what the elaboration of human social life (which would include the ritual markings of respect and contempt) is for. It cannot be for biological reasons he argues, and therefore there must be some redundancy of our brain and nervous system (Harré 1980, 14). His suggestion is that we are posturing for each other's admiration, and ultimately this is part of some idle game, as it were. While the presentational and expressive activities of human beings provide the central dynamic of society according to Harré, there is ultimately no sense to this.
This position seems flawed. Could there not be certain parallels with the peacock's display and with hierarchies of animal dominance and subordination, and with factors affecting sexual selection? Whether this is so or not, the argument here is that expressive activities are a solution to a basic problem embedded  in human nature, the problem of reconciling self-interest with the conflicting interests of others. We advance individual interests by acquiring Geltung, fundamentally because it increases our inclusive biological fitness, and more generally because it brings pleasurable rewards. But the giving of respect and honor is also the way that ''society'' shapes our behavior to be less self-serving, and sometimes even to be sacrificial. As such, it is part of a complex social web of checks and balances. It is the way that the biological interests of others are protected and advanced.
The explicitly biological frame of reference, important as it is, is unfortunately not at center stage in contemporary geography, and I therefore want to couch my argument in different terms focusing on motivation. Two of the more important competing rhetorics in recent human geography have focused on ''action'' and on a structural explanation. The adherents, as with Kuhn's paradigms, have viewed the world through their chosen frame of reference, advocating its strength and attacking the weakness of competitors (Kuhn 1962). Evidence has been fitted to this chosen frame and given meaning by it. So much so, that it has not been at all easy for the followers of one to communicate with the supporters of the other. Those who have emphasized intentionality and human agency (which is the more social notion of these two) have been dissatisfied with the passive view of man that the structuralists often presented. Their choice has thus been a moral as well as an intellectual one. The argument presented in this paper, drawing as it does upon Wittgenstein (1972), Goffman (1959), and Harré (1980), uses the action frame. From such a perspective, ideas of motivation and intention are central.
In discussing how we might use these concepts of motivation and intention in understanding the geographical expression of respect and honor, I will draw on the very rich literature of the law where much attention has been paid to what they mean. It seems, firstly, that the most noteworthy characteristic of a motive in law is that it is forward looking. It tells us something about some state of affairs which ''A'' had in mind at the time of his act and toward which he calculates that the act will carry him. In other words, a motive explanation tells us what interest the actor was pursuing. Since it makes little sense to think of having an intention for a motive, whereas it does make sense to have a motive for an intention, it is appropriate to think of motive as preceding intention. We can say then that there is the following sequence in much of human behavior: motivation, intention, act, consequences.
 The general legal opinion is that ''intention'' cannot be satisfactorily defined and does not need a definition, since everyone knows what it means. Hence the present practice in the law is to leave the word without explanation. We can say however that something is intended when the actor desires that it follows from his conduct. But this intention seems to be conceptually different from motive. We may be out in the woods intending to shoot a deer, but our motive for doing this can be any one of many possibilities. Perhaps we seek to acquire Geltung by displaying the trophy to our friends, perhaps we are hungry. It would appear from this analysis that motive is less proximate to the act itself. We could, of course, say that it was our intention to shoot the deer and also to acquire Geltung, indicating that there are various intents. In this case motivation would be a way of categorizing these later and further intents.
There is a Canadian case, Dunbar v. the King (1936), which is of help in understanding this point. The accused was charged with being a party to the offense of murder. He drove the getaway car for a bank robbery during which a teller was shot to death. His liability depended upon whether he had a ''common intention to prosecute an unlawful purpose." His defense was that he was threatened with death by the other members of the gang unless he assisted. Therefore, he argued, his intention was to save his own life, not to prosecute the bank robbery. The majority of the Supreme Court of Canada held that the accused's argument confused intent with motive and since he knew that what he was doing furthered the robbery, he had the intention to prosecute an unlawful purpose even if the reason (i.e. his motive) was to save his own life. So it would follow therefore that if ''B'' intends to put poison in his aunt's tea in order to cause her death so that he can inherit her money, the intent would be ''to cause her death'' and the motive would be ''to inherit her money." This conclusion fits with Austin's analysis of motive as the ''spring of action." He distinguished motive from intention by declaring simply: ''The intention is the aim of the act, of which the motive is the spring" (Austin 1879, 165).
What is particularly interesting is that questions of motive are not relevant to criminal liability. A motiveless crime is still a crime. Why is this so? One possible explanation is that it is all too easy to misrepresent one's motive and tailor the reasons to the circumstances, and it is impossible in practice to access a person's mind to check on such reasons. Yet this explanation is far from being satisfactory. It is after all the very task of the courts to determine the truth from the evidence and the circumstances. Furthermore, the essence of a crime in law today is in fact a mental element. Until about the twelfth century one could be held liable for many harms simply because they resulted from certain conduct whether blameworthy or not. Gradually, under the influence of Canon Law and Roman Law, a change took place, and the courts required that some element of blame -- a guilty mind -- be shown. Today this technical mental element is essential in the common law of crime and is known as mens rea.
If it does not seem overly plausible, then, that the usual answer to why a motive is not relevant to criminal liability is the difficulty of determining it, what is a better answer? Perhaps it is this, that while the question of motivation helps in understanding and explaining individual actions, it offers nothing of value to the very different interests that others in society have of preventing certain acts occurring at all. To understand Robin Hood and to explain his behavior, and indeed in the law to assess his punishment, we need to know the reasons for it. Those, however, who are the victims or potential victims of such acts have little interest in the motivation behind them. It is of no advantage to be robbed or murdered by someone who has a good motive. It is the consequences for the victim that count here. So it is that in a geographic setting if we are to understand human behavior, we need to understand the motivation for it, the rewards that are sought, or the pains that are avoided. But others in that setting evaluate actions by what the impact is on them, and the actual motivations involved are often of peripheral interest. Social conventions, such as the ritual markings of respect and contempt, appear to take this social interest into account.
The point is an important one for it means that ''society'' rewards what it views as correct behavior and is only marginally interested in the reasons for such behavior. The quintessential rewards that society bestows are those of respect and honor. Through these it shapes the individual so that his behavior fits in and conforms, and may even encourage him to take personal risks for social benefit. As Harré (1980, 4) puts it, ''Morality and its ethical systems will turn out to be among the ways we present our actions to enjoy the respect of our fellow moralists -- and so despite ourselves treat each other less harshly than mere calculation would advise." A good way of furthering this overall aim is to set up idealized models of morality such as religions do and exhort others to behave in this way. Or, more particularly, to identify as heroes those whose behavior best serves  in the promotion of social interests. In setting out such a position, Alexander (1983) points to the prevalence amongst those who are awarded sainthood of asceticism, self-denial, isolation from relatives, non-reproductive behavior, devotion to the welfare of strangers and other apparently altruistic behavior.6 Some will be uncomfortable with this argument whereby morality is seen as a kind of manipulation. But it should not be surprising; morality is after all also the glue that binds us together, for its effect is to play up a sense of social obligation which in turn diminishes and controls self-inteiest.
It should be obvious at this point that the acquisition of Geltung and the maintenance of moral systems go hand-in-hand. We are not, as I have already said, posturing for each other's admiration as part of some idle game, as Harré implies; instead what is going on is a systematized interaction between self-interest (which is grounded in a biological framework of inclusive fitness) and a social organization that has evolved culturally to inhibit selfishness and deceit by encouraging moralistic behavior. The seeking of respect and honor and the avoidance of shame and humiliation almost certainly have a biological base, and this is worked out by an extraordinary cultural elaboration which is not only expressive, but also very practical. It addresses, at least in part, that fundamental problem of reconciling self-interest with the conflicting interests of others. The geographic display of evaluative status should perhaps be ultimately understood in this light.
Goffman's work focuses on an indoor social life, one in which there are fixed settings, where strangers are usually kept out, and where performers are given some privacy in which to prepare themselves for the show. Certainly in modern urban life, it is the social interactions in small-scale places that best lend themselves to his form of analysis. Geographers, however, are interested not only in such places and their communicative aspects, but also in the symbolism of visible landscapes, and there is much that is recorded there that speaks to questions of prestige and value. It is as though landscapes store Geltung as though they are dressed up as part of the scramble to be noticed. This public display of Geltung, this ''symbolic capital," which is the outcome of a process of social structuration, provides a visible geographic record which invites some comment. While the examples that follow are not in  themselves overly significant, they do suggest that something of interest is occurring, and they lend some initial credence to what is being argued here.
Displays of worthiness, signs of evaluative status, are shared experiences of cultures, and commonly understood. We know these things although we do not always consciously interpret them in status terms. Places acquire differential reputations, and we select where we live and where we visit partly on this basis. Large houses, long driveways and high hedges are just some of many signs, varying from region to region that are expressive displays of status. We can all relate to the general point in terms of Goffman's comments on a house in a crofting community which is ''in a sense, public relations oriented with a front yard fenced off and kept somewhat clean, presenting a dressed-up side to the community while debris is strewn at random in the unfenced back regions'' (Goffman 1959). Other contemporary props include such things as Jaguars, Mercedes and B.M.W. cars, the male teenager's stereo sound system, leather jacket, pointed and buckled shoes and torn pants. Some symbols, particularly those embedded in buildings, persist for long periods, others are relatively transient and change with fashion. Those that are mass-produced or widely acquired may become devalued and replaced by novel forms. These props, these symbols, are part of our displays. We acquire Geltung from them, a degree of social potential stored in reputations, as Wagner has insightfully pointed out (Wagner n.d.).
Conspicuous consumption, as a form of status assertion, is very much a part of Western and, increasingly, some Asian landscapes. Veblen was greatly concerned with the degree to which the productive system consumed resources as individuals demanded status symbols. But Foote argues that a better interpretation might be that such props are an effective means for defining and promoting interaction (Foote 1983). So while inefficient in one sense, they are efficient in another sense, that of establishing identity. As he says, ''costumes, patterns of conduct, manner of speech, and physical settings are only the means by which social actors realize their identities'' (Foote 1983, 128). The physical city can thus be seen as a cultural artifact employed in the process of human communication and, more specifically in the context of this paper, used to denote evaluative status.
Thus it is that civic authorities promote a city's reputation by downtown civic developments and by encouraging large and impressive office buildings. Indeed, there seems to be a perceived correlation between status and height. Whether tall office buildings themselves  are efficient, economic, and practical is a moot point, but common sense suggests that the factors of reputation and respect are very much at stake here as well. It is not only the living who show their standing in such ways. Consider the cemetery as a microcosm of the urban world. High land is reserved for those of high status, and low-lying areas for the less exalted. Large tombstones and mausoleums house those with most Geltung, and, like the preindustrial city and Central Business Districts of today, status in a cemetery may be related to centrality.
Retail outlets too display differential status, which is to be expected, since their very success may depend on this. Foote has shown how the less expensive service outlets have more vivid colors and the more expensive stores less color. More generally he has argued in this connection that ''the idea of the prop holds the promise of elucidating the relation between landscape and communication'' (Foote 1983, 41). As he suggests, material objects have a certain degree of permanence of communication, for, unlike talk, they do not need continued reproduction. To act out wealth and power all the time is a daunting task; to embody this in home and car is more efficient and effective. He points out that ''with prolonged use physical forms can be established as metaphors expressive of subjective concepts'' so that, for example, physical size relates to status (Foote 1983, 110). In a key statement he reminds us that ''in our culture, proper orientation generally requires that we have information about the status and power of the organizations and individuals with whom we come into contact'' (Foote 1983, 115). The ambience of law courts is one example lending support to this view.
Our visible surroundings then are part of a communication system. Amongst other things, they help to foster our identities and structure interactions. As Wagner has pointed out, we can think in terms of a geographic distribution of Geltung (Wagner n.d.). As such, Geltung should not be thought of simply as a mark of wasteful, conspicuous consumption, for it also functions to structure societies, regulate interaction and act as a material expression of power and social control. In short, the accumulation of Geltung enables some individuals to influence the behavior of others.
 Demeaned and Devalued
The point has been made, and indeed emphasized, that there are numerous moral orders or rhetorics in which moral careers, the pursuit of respect, the search for honor, can be advanced. The risk of hazards, such as university exams, is undertaken in order to earn credits which enhance reputations and store social potential. Those who do not do ''well'' in school, or in an occupation, may seek respect in other places at other times, on different evaluative scales. The Hell's Angels are just one example that has been given. Such different moral orders may well compete for standing and this may generate hostilities. Indeed a great deal of conflict, whether at the scale of family generations, or that of major cultural groupings, can be interpreted in this way. When status is threatened, its loss is resisted. Uncertain evaluation makes one anxious and may increase the assertiveness of status claims. But what of those who are devalued and demeaned in a society and find no ready and alternative niche? Those who fall through the cracks as it were? Perceived devaluation makes people angry and disturbed. At its worst, a lack of self-esteem and self-respect, accompanied perhaps by low social potential stored in a reputation, may occasion acute depression.
Since Durkheim, it has been understood that status is relative to a frame of reference, and in his book, Suicide,
he took this into account (Durkheim 1951). Anomie in fact originally
meant the absence of a referent or standard of comparison. Without such
a referent how would one know if one had enough respect, esteem or
privilege? Deprivation therefore is relative and independent of the
absolute level of advantage. Within a social group, such status
differences correlate with levels of participation, evaluation of
performance, and influence. As Wagner has stated, Geltung begets Geltung
(Wagner n.d.). Similarly Weber maintained that those with high status
would in time acquire wealth and those with wealth would in time
acquire status (Weber 1946). In other words the status order persists
and the least-regarded have little opportunity to upset it. Thus it is
that we find that the characteristics of depression are lack of
participation, anxiety, and lack of interest in possessions (as Geltung props). Expressive orders by their very nature demean and devalue. The educational arguments that revolve around appropriate grading systems attest to this point.
Demeaning and devaluing may cause such hurt that any discussion of its mere geographic expression seems almost unimportant. Such expression is there, however, in racial segregation, in  the sort of residential segregation Walter Firey (1945) wrote about more than forty years ago, in the devaluation of women displayed by their places of work, and in the visual appearances of different housing tenures where private houses and private condominiums often show more pride than public housing and rental suites. Something of it is reflected in the location and type of recreational and sporting facilities, and even more notably in land values. Here in Vancouver, for instance, on the 400 block of West Hastings, near Pigeon Park, buildings can be bought in strategic locations close to the heart of the city for what seem nominal sums, while three or more blocks away on the same street prices are markedly higher. This is not at all unusual. Land values relate unevenly in Vancouver and many other cities to simple distance relationships. It is the image of a place, its status, its prestige, its propriety that counts as much as, and often more than, simple accessibility.
It is one thing to put forward a theoretical position of how an important part of the human world works, but it is a much more difficult task to demonstrate strong empirical support. This is a recurrent theme in geographic thought. Thus heuristically useful spatial models seem distanced from ''naughty worlds." And Marxist theoretical categories obscure as much as they enlighten us about actual geographic observations. This sort of segregation of theory and empirical investigation gives rise to the danger of choosing anecdotes and illustrations that fit pre-conceived positions. Instead of theories being checked by facts, facts are used to lend some support to theories.
The argument that the search for respect and honor, and the construction of reputations, is significant in understanding human behavior in specific geographic settings seems to be far-reaching, but it remains at this stage a low-order generalization that stays close to the ground. Because it is part of our experiences it is not surprising to us or unexpected; it is part of our commonsense view of the world, although we may make different judgments as to its importance or helpfulness. It is when things are not part of our experience, such as the very small and the very large in the physical sciences, that we are surprised at how they behave and we find theories are not always in accord with common sense.
I want in what follows to show how social interaction in particular venues is part of a complex, and sometimes subtle,  communicative process and how the idea of respect is central to understanding the purposefulness of what is going on. That people can and do control their public images through impression management appears to be a basic tenet of many theories of the self in social interaction. As Goffman's obituary in the New York Times in 1982 put it, ''People are essentially performers whose main business is fabricating an identity." The two additional stresses that are being laid in this paper are on the importance of the idea of Geltung in understanding performances and on the significance of a communicative geographic environment -- the props and setting which provide a context or frame of reference to what is going on.
There is a character in Robertson Davies's The Rebel Angels who says, "It has been my observation over a long life that a man's possessions are a surer clue to his character than anything he says or does." We only have to reflect on our own observations to know how rich the information is that is provided by a person's clothing or domain. Away from home, it is the places we choose to be in that are clues to our social character. But reputations are built not only on freely chosen venues; more constrained choices such as place of work, or even places like prisons where we may be forced to go are also highly constitutive.
Terkel's (1975) book, Working, gives some glimpse of what is happening. "I drive a garbage truck for the city," says one man. ''I have nothing to be ashamed of . . . We make a pretty good salary . . . I can go any place I want. I conduct myself as a gentleman any place I go. My wife is happy, this is the big thing. She doesn't look down at me. I think that's more important than the white-collar guy looking down at me." A waitress describes her resentment when a customer ''dares make me feel I'm operating only for a tip,'' and then goes on to comment, ''When somebody says to me, 'You're great, how come you're just a waitress?' Just a waitress. l'd say, 'Why, don't you think you deserve to be served by me?' It's implying that he's not worthy, not that I'm not worthy. It makes me irate. I don't feel lowly at all.'' The washroom attendant however, is not particularly proud of what he's doing. ''The shine man and I discuss it quite freely. In my own habitat I don't go around saying l'm a washroom attendant at the Palmer House. Outside my immediate family, very few people know what I do." While he does not want to be noticed, he is aware that others do. ''An attendant or a captain in a dining room or a doorman --I don't care who you are, if you're President of the United States or United Steel -- if you walk into any washroom, you like to be recognized." Usually the parties to such interactions  sustain the respect of each other; it is that which gives the lifeworld its structure and stability, but by subtle shifts in behavior, positions are ''negotiated'' up and down.
It is not only behavior within settings that is of geographic interest. The getting there, the boundary crossing, is also important. This question of access appears to be a focus of Wagner's own work and one raison d'etre for his interest in Geltung (Wagner n.d.). For my own part, I want to draw once again on the law in order to examine this aspect. There is a British Columbia case, Regina v. Bushman (1963) in which the facts were as follows:
Two police constables investigating a complaint of a ''hit and run'' automobile accident called at respondent's private house at 11:00 p.m., drove their car into respondent's yard and there examined his automobile, removing from it some paint scrapings. They then approached the house, entered a small porch, the door of which stood open, and knocked on an inner door which led to the kitchen. Respondent's wife came to the door where she was shortly joined by respondent, who, following some questioning by the constables, suddenly ordered them to leave and immediately thereafter struck one of them.
It was held by two of the justices of appeal that:
the appeal must be allowed and a verdict of guilty entered; the police had implied leave and license to enter respondent's yard and to approach his house in order to communicate with him on their lawful business; they did not become trespassers when they entered the porch which, with its open door, constituted an invitation to them to proceed past it to the outer door of the house proper. Whilst the respondent was fully entitled to revoke the implied leave and license, he was required to give the licensee a reasonable opportunity to act on the revocation.
The third judge, however, dissented and argued that:
When the constables approached respondent's car, which was standing on his private property, and without any authority from him, removed paint scrapings from it, they were trespassers and it may be questioned whether following this, on their approach to the house, they took on the character of licensees; in any case, when they entered the porch they became trespassers since, when they crossed its threshold, they had passed the point where respondent intended his privacy to begin; the fact that the porch door stood open did not change  matters. At the time when respondent struck the constable, the latter, being a trespasser, was not engaged in the lawful execution of his duty.
In this dissenting judgment the judge quoted part of the cross-examination of one of the constables as follows:
Q. So you entered onto the private property of the accused, did you?
A. Yes, I did.
Q. When you got to the porch was this a closed-in porch?
A. It was all boarded in except for the door was open.
Q. It was boarded in?
A. It had four wails on it and a doorway.
Q. Were there any lights on in the house?
A. No, I don't believe there was.
Q. So you -- did you knock on the outside wall of this porch?
A. l knocked on the door of the house.
Q. So you entered into the porch to do that.
A. Inside the porch.
Q. How great a space is there between the porch outside the door and the inside door?
A. Maybe three or four feet, five feet at the most.
Q. Was there anything to prevent you from knocking on the outside porch door?
A. No, there wasn't.
The judge then argued:
The porch was an integral part of the dwelling house; it was completely boarded in and had an outer door as well as an inner door. With deference to those who may hold a contrary view, I do not think that it is open to us to find that a man's dwelling house does not begin where he has put a wall with a door in it through which one must pass to get into the house. That is the point where he intends his privacy to begin and his, and his alone, must be the decision on that. The fact that the outer door happened to be standing open did not change matters.
case is dealing with subtle cognitions of the character of a place, of
the meanings embedded there. There is a stage and props and a dramatic
performance. In the interaction that takes place propriety is at issue.
The standing of the law enforcement officers and of the occupants of
the house are being negotiated.
Status is being challenged, and this is being resisted. Respective Geltungs are in play. So much is at stake here that the matter has to be formally adjudicated. Judges, acting as cultural arbitrators, lay down the rules that will inform similar interactions in the future.
The law is an extraordinarily rich treasure-house of such carefully detailed and analyzed examples. Another illustration of the jealous preservation of the individual's right to deny access can be seen in the case of Watson v. Murray & Co. (1955). The defendants, who were sheriffs' officers, seized goods in the plaintiff's shop (a ladies' and children's outfitters) under writs of fieri facias.7 But in doing so they exceeded their jurisdiction, and it was held that each of the following acts of the officers constituted trespass: (1) locking the plaintiff's premises when they had lotted the goods for the purpose of a sale and thus excluding her; (2) opening her premises for a public viewing of the goods; (3) and putting up posters on the window of the plaintiff's shop advertising the sale.
Here again there are a series of events in a geographic place where standing and respect are at stake. Those in authority have a power, a social potential as it were, that is far from unlimited. There is a tension between the parties to this interaction which revolves in large part around questions of propriety and respect. We get round these tensions by giving respect where it is due, by rituals that mark these matters. It is proper, respectful behavior and our knowledge of this that allows us to move so freely from place to place and cross most boundaries with impunity. The act of entering geographic behavior settings that are territorial, in the sense that someone has ''possession,'' and by regulating entry to some degree, maintains a certain spatial exclusivity, requires politeness, a certain standard of performance, an acceptable display. Once we are received within the setting, a second kind of standard of performance is required, one that shows a respect for the place in which the actor is performing, which Goffman calls decorum. It is expected that whatever behavior is displayed will be consistent with the character of the physical location. Such expectations apply to churches, classrooms, hospitals, shops -- in fact all kinds of geographic places. As for the performance itself, the more impressive the physical setting, the easier it is to make a mark, for audiences often have little choice but to infer the character of actors from settings and props.
What explanation means in the context of action is the reason for
doing something. Action is a concept that logically entails some
reference to intention and motive, which have to do with purpose.
Actions can therefore succeed or fail. They can also be done well or
badly, performed successfully or unsuccessfully, because all meaningful
human behavior is governed by conventions and rules, as in the legal
cases that have been referred to (Winch 1958). These performances
inevitably take place in geographic settings, at different times, in
what, after Wagner, l have called venues. These geographic settings,
the stages and props, are not neutral.
On the contrary they are vital elements of the interaction. They are frames of reference which contribute greatly to the meaning and significance of what is going on.
And what is going on is, in part, a search for respect and honor, an identity that is esteemed. This identity draws heavily on its milieu, so much so, that we choose carefully where we go, and we calculate the risks, we weigh up at least to some degree, the credits to be gained and lost. In thus pursuing credits, it is the knowledge of the proprieties of life, the proper giving of respect and the rituals by which this is marked, that enables actors to move more freely across boundaries from place to place. As Goffman might have put it, it is at these spatial barriers that we can observe performers in the process of changing between their offstage manner and their onstage manner. Both social circulation and social stability thus owe something to Geltung.
Moral careers are, of course, subject to real geographic worlds, to the tyranny of circumstances through time. What earns respect in one setting or at one time, may not do so in another. There is a continuity, but it is a broken one rather like, to us the familiar Wittgensteinian figure, a rope composed of many strands no one of which runs for its entire length or across its entire width. It is no more than a historic fact that we have Geltung in its present forms. The code of reputability is an ever-changing one.
lf impression management is a sort of information game, it is one then that must be sensitive not only to conventions (ceremony  and ritual) but also to changing values. The accolades of respect are awarded only to those who adapt to changing times and changing places. Indeed it seems quite likely that, in differing degrees, there is always some sort of negotiation going on regarding the rightness of displays. In this way there is not only a reinforcement of conventional behavior and thus a social reproduction, there is also a process of transforming social institutions. As Giddens has pointed out, ''social changes of a deep-rooted kind, by their very nature, involve alterations in the character of day-to-day social practices'' (Giddens 1987, 139).
Goffman's work (1959), which forms a basis for what is said here, has been extensively praised, but it has also been criticized on various grounds. It is said to be ''in a certain sense empty in respect of the motivation that leads actors to behave as they do in day-to-day life." Actors are seen as ''shallowly cynical in their manipulation of what goes on'' and self-impressiveness is seen as an aspect of the ''amoral'' character of contemporary urban living. Such doubts, however, are allayed by recognizing the importance of a search for respect as a motivating force for impression management, and by seeing the whole process of according respect as one that is closely related to the fostering of social obligation. Membership in societies, in moral orders, requires that we follow the rules, that we do what is expected, and we earn respect in this way.
The geographic interest in what has been set out here might focus on social behaviors and especially on social interaction, in places of different character, on the nature of such locales, especially their communicative aspects, as well as on movement between social territories. Interesting as such studies might be in themselves, the objective should be to develop a more coherent and embracing conceptual understanding. For, as Giddens points out, Goffman's interaction order ''is never separate from either the ordering of behaviour across contexts of co-presence, or the ordering of such contexts themselves in relation to one another'' (Giddens 1987, 136).
Whatever the focus, geographers surely cannot ignore expressive environments and human displays. In Veblen's geographically apposite words, "In order to gain and to hold the esteem of men it is not sufficient merely to possess wealth or power. The wealth or power must be put in evidence, for esteem is awarded only on evidence'' (Veblen 1899). His conception of how esteem is earned is more limited than ours would be, but as geographers we readily recognize the significance of visible evidence. Humanly constructed environments are usually there to be noticed, and being noticed is important.8 In part this is because they are communicative, they are designed to provide information as well as to be used. Some, at least, of this ''being noticed'' is a public display that has to do with respect and reputation. This essay itself is some small evidence of that, for if nothing else the writer is hoist by his own petard, although the ascription of some nobler motive would be preferred.
This paper came about partly in response to Wagner's suggestion that
I should write something. Although the initial formulation of the ideas
owes much to Rom Harré's work, which l first came across in 1983, the
subsequent shaping was influenced by discussions with Wagner on
parallel ideas that he was working on. Whatever merit there is in this
paper which is not attributable to Harré is owed to Phil Wagner. Those
parts that seem to lack merit should be laid at my door.
1. Other contextual recidivists of significance are R. G.
Collingwood, E. Auerbach, E. Gombrich, M. Foucault, T. S. Kuhm and C.
2. As to whether Goffman's work is theoretical, see Giddens (1987).
3. See Harvey (1987), and Debord (1983). Debord offers a Marxist interpretation of the expressive side of life.
4. Veblen (1899 25-26). It should be pointed out that Veblen uses the term "invidious" in a technical rather than pejorative sense. An invidious comparison is ''a process of valuation of persons in respect of worth."
5. Weber (1968, 187). See the comments on sentiment, symbolism and social honor in Jackson and Smith (1984).
6. See also Campbell (1983).
7. Fieri facias. A writ of execution in an action of debt or damages.
8. Not being noticed map in some circumstances, be important too.
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