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COMMONS MAGAZINE

What If We Had to Pay to See a Mountain?

A college class makes a witty video exploring the impact of the commons in their lives

The commons is a growing subject of study in universities today. On The Commons has made appearances at Grinnell College, the University of Iowa, St. Olaf College, Gustavus Adolphus College and took part in planning a Commons Festival at Augsburg College. We are planning a bigger campus tour for next fall. If you would like to bring the commons to your school, contact us at: info@onthecommons.org

Students at Portland State University taking a class about “Reclaiming the Commons” created an entertaining video exploring what the commons means for their community. Working with the local commons group The Oregon Commons they chose Mt. Hood, the iconic peak that can be seen from many parts of the city, as a symbol of what everyone shares together.


To illustrate escalating threats to what belongs to all of us, they titled the work “What If You Had to Pay to See Mount Hood?” After grabbing Portlanders’ attention with that, a witty back-and-forth ensues between two students— one an active commoner, the other a skeptic— about what the commons encompasses and why it matters.


Watch it “here”:http://ecowiki.pdx.edu/