This Side This Side This Side This Side Up: An Alternative Approach to Social Design is my graduate thesis, completed for Pratt Institute's MFA Communications Design program. The thesis advocates an approach to social design in which design acts as neither problem solving nor critique, but as a catalyst that shifts perceptions and propels its audience to action. This divergent approach focuses on design as an experiential medium capable of disruption. Designing an intentional disruption of everyday life can alter or broaden a person’s perspective, instill empathy, and ultimately prompt a shift towards more prosocial behavior while still allowing the audience agency.
I designed my thesis book to reflect the central component of disrupting perception and acknowledging multiple ways of experiencing the same reality. The book reads in multiple directions, and there is no clearly indicated "correct" order that the reader should observe. Everyone will ultimately end up reading the same words, but the order in which people read them depends on what direction they started with. These varied narratives end up influencing the way that a reader comes to understand the thesis.