Spaces of Belonging and the Precariousness of Home

Erik Bormanis

Abstract


In this essay, I pose the question: what does it mean to be at home in a world where housing is increasingly a private commodity? I draw upon phenomenological analyses of the experience of home from Bachelard and Heidegger, both elaborating upon the fruitful descriptions of home as anchoring our temporal experience, while at the same time critiquing Bachelard’s all too hasty claim that all human beings begin in welcoming homes. As such, I claim that insofar as spaces of dwelling are not simply available in an increasingly precarious world, we ought to commit ourselves both to the work of cultivating more spaces of dwelling, and resisting an economic and political understanding of dwelling that reduces it to a purely material structure, or worse, an essentially fungible commodity or investment property, rather than a place that provides the conditions and parameters for human life.

Keywords


Home; Phenomenology; Space; Shelter; Bachelard

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Copyright (c) 2019 Erik Bormanis

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