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Fidel Dorantes

10/14/14
What I know about my topic is very little other than the definition of the topic and some
examples of my topic in action as a dramatized subject, and other forms of the topic. To begin with, I
know that the term isolation means to be completely alone. This can be achieved through multiple
levels of loneliness ranging from physical loneliness, such as in the case of being the last man on earth
or being stranded alone, emotionally alone as is in the case of many adolescents and misunderstood
individuals, and being mentally alone such as in the case of widows, being in a foreign country, single
children, adopted/foster children, or teenage years. I know that isolation has been considered a form of
torture by many societies because of the adverse effects that it can have on a person based on the results
of solitary confinement. I know that many different people respond differently to isolation and for
differing times. Genetically, humans are a social creature and do desire companionship in some form
and when left alone will create it.
My working inquiry question is 'What affect does long term isolation have on people?' And I do
know that it is one that could use a very good touch up to make it more subjective and researchable. I
also know that I have spoken to you about how I could turn this into a genuine inquiry project.
However, I do have some other ideas for an inquiry project that I would like to discuss with you as well
as perhaps alternates.
I think that the entire idea of what isolation is and how its been used historically and what it can
do to people is really interesting. Why is it that some people are so desperate to never be alone even
when they don't realize they are doing it themselves? Why is it that when a person is left alone for too
long, and what qualifies as too long, they start creating forms of interaction to combat the loneliness
and isolation? How does isolation affect how people are brought up and how entire cultures that are
isolated have advanced, or have not? How does isolation affect different types of people and to how
large a degree does it play a part in society? What positions in societies force isolation, in any form, on

a person and what does society expect them to do to cope with it? So mainly I am interested int the
psychological aspects of loneliness along with some actual physical effects of loneliness. The main
reason I am so interested is because of an idea that I heard long ago. The idea went something like a
man's true worth is only evident when he is alone. There have been tons of movies, books, games, and
real life accounts of people forced into situations where they are isolated in some way and in all of
those media they react differently and the same at the same time. Depending on what form of isolation
they found themselves in some were more violent and aggressive in escaping it while others shared the
same common trait of gaining a phobia like fear of being alone again. It might even also be worth
finding out why humans are such a social animal and if we are if it is because of nature or nurture and
how does it change a person. Because it does. Sometimes in small ways but there is always some form
of change after having to go through something alone. This could even tie into why people who face
adversity together bond faster than if they had not gone through the same things by themselves.
My main assumptions are that people have some idea of what it means to be alone, that they
many may have even felt alone before, and that being isolated in some way makes a person change. My
general assumptions about isolation itself is that it can be mentally, physically, and emotionally
damaging on a person that is not used to it and that those who are used to, or even like being alone, are
in some ways very different than what may be conventionally acceptable.
Logistics wise, my main source for tales of isolation are as I said before, movies, books,
dramas, real life accounts either through survival situations, solitary confinement in prisons, animal
children, and family patterns, and whatever else I can find through google. I may want to consult
people who have gone through these kinds of situations and may want to find a way to interview some
prisoners who have gone though solitary confinement and even officers of the law that use solitary
confinement and how they feel about it.
My main researching problems are definitely going to be finding convincing sources that help
either prove or disprove isolations affect on people that do so subjectively and in a way that could be

further expanded upon. Another is that primary research would be very difficult as most people are not
place into positions of isolation and want to talk about it.
Weirdly enough, the main outcome I want from this project is for people to understand that
being alone, even feeling alone, can be a bad thing for some people and if they see someone who is
almost dangerously isolated either through their actions or others, to go and offer them a hand of
companionship and to try to lift the burden off of them however little it may be. Side note: since I am in
computer science I know that some burdens are usually self inflicted and that it is impossible to do
everything alone. As most people assume programmers and the like enjoy being alone, oftentimes this
ready acceptance can sometimes be the only thing that could have saved someone from overworking
themselves or choosing to commit suicide. Main point is that I want people to be a little bit more nosier
in someones business because they may be the first person to have ever cared.