Caldwell points out that people are shaped by their “external environment” (160). Gladness’s theory, the importance of immediate physical environments, can also be found in Czar Naïf’s passage, Reading Laity in Tehran, showing us how she created an outlet for herself and a selected number of former students to study the works Of literature in an extremely difficult environment.
Both “The power Of Context” and “Reading Laity in Tehran” emphasize the role that physical place plays in human behavior, however, how does the “immediate physical and social world” (165) affect the behavior of the women in Naïf’s reading group? Throughout The Power of Context, Malcolm Caldwell describes he effects that the certain environments cause. Caldwell says that, “… Our inner states are the result of our outer circumstances” and so that people are highly sensitive to their environments and behave accordingly (160).
To illustrate the power of context, Caldwell takes on the strangely rapid decline in violent crime rates that occurred in the sass in New York City. Although Caldwell acknowledges that a wide variety of complex factors and variables likely played a role in sparking the decline, he argues convincingly that it was a few small but influential changes in the environment of the city that allowed hose factors to tip into a major reduction in crime.
For instance, “Children are powerfully shaped by their external environment the features of our immediate social and physical world, the streets we walk down, the people we encounter -? play a huge role in shaping who we are and how we This can support Gladden’s claim because it shows the direct effect that a person’s environment has during his growth period.
Caldwell provides an account of the steps leading to the recovery of the city, supporting his general theory that the environment exerts greater influence over a person’s mentality and actions than previously realized, as it behaves as a mechanism that triggers abnormal emotions and personalities. Through Gladden’s lens, the surroundings of Czar Naifs help to shape her identity clearly. Modern day Iran is a example of the “certain kinds of environments” (160) that Caldwell mentions in his text because the government had a high restriction of right in exploring in literature.
In Czar Naïf’s life, her environment was the controlling factor that led her to make drastic changes in a world in which she felt trapped. As Naïf’s group changed their context– room the streets of Tehran, racked with the eyes of the regime, to the private world of Naïf’s living room-? their behavior changed greatly and arguably even their character. In Reading Laity in Tehran, Czar Naifs writes, “That room, for all of us, became a place of transgression. What a wonderland it was! Sitting around the large coffee table covered with bouquets of flowers, we moved in and out of the novels we read.
Looking back, I am amazed at how much we learned without even noticing it. We were, to borrow from Nabob, to experience how the ordinary pebble of ordinary life could be ransomed into a jewel through the magic eye of fiction “(252). This is an exact evidence to explain how the behavior of the women in Naïf’s reading group affected by their “immediate physical and social world” (1 65), mentioned by Caldwell. Duo to the limitation of Iranian government, Naifs came up with the idea of creating an outlet for herself and a selected number of former students to study the works of literature that were banned by the government. She was coerced into doing so because “an absurd fictionally ruled [their] lives. We tried to live in the open spaces, in the chink’s created between that room and the censors world of witches and goblins outside” (264). The physical world in which Naifs lives caused her personal revolution that was against the federal government. Naifs and her reading group’s changes, as supported by Gladden’s theory, highlights the influence of the physical and social environment. Otherwise, if Naifs did not live in such a strict situation, she might not have the brave or the idea of founding a reading group and explored the inner herself.
A reverse of Gladden’s Power f Context seems to take place in Tehran, and happened on Naifs, where the lack of presence in the context leads individuals to act. It is easy to find some connections between “the Power of Context” and Reading Laity in Tehran, and the Gladden’s theory can fit part of what happened of Naïf’s life because the changes in these women is still a result of the environment, however, it is only a partial fit. Recall what Caldwell says, “the impetus to engage in a certain kind of behavior is not coming from a certain kind of person but from a feature of the environment’ (155).
But Naifs is exactly the certain kind of person who has an academic background, thinking about her personal life and value and beginning change her life. At this point, we can not ignore the influence of the environment she was living, but the environment is not only the reason leading her behavior. “There, in that living room, we rediscovered that we were also living, breathing human beings; and no matter how repressive the state became, no matter how intimidated and frightened we were, like Laity we tried to escape and to create our own little pockets of freedom” (264).
Here, not the “immediate physical and social world” (165) affecting the behavior, the group of women wanted to create their own small dream world. Author Malcolm Caldwell describes the significance that an individual’s environment has on his/her overall character development. Through his theory we can understand the meaning of Naïf’s group behavior. Though the repressive and arrogant Iranian government disregarded their citizen’s rights to freedom, they inadvertently gave Naifs the power and strength to revolt against their demands, we cannot say that
Without the influence of her environment, Naïf’s life would be entirely different, because the women’s behavior was affected by the immediate physical and social world, but not only the result of the environment.