Environmental psychologist Susan Clayton of the College of Wooster explains that a person’s home is part of their self-definition, which is a reason we decorate and modify the immediate surroundings to our taste – displaying their homes as an extension of themselves. It is human nature to want to belong to a place, but also we want to be special. Thus, maybe the suburbs or a rural town that was an individual’s childhood home may not always be the image of yourself you want to project. Rather, it can be common to identify with another place or milieu of greater distinction.
Another interesting concept discussed is the Western viewpoint of home with a quote from a William S. Sax book on Hindu pilgrimage: “People and the places where they reside are engaged in a continuing set of exchanges; they have determinate, mutual effects upon each other because they are part of a single, interactive system” – a conception of home held by many South Asians. Interestingly, Sax is quoted as saying “your psychology, and your consciousness and your subjectivity don’t really depend on the place where you live…they come from inside – from inside your brain, or inside your soul or inside your personality.” With many South Asian communities a home isn’t just where you are, it’s who you are.
The article presents an interesting take on the traditional Western preconceptions of home and contrasts them with numerous examples. Read the full article here.
Photographs: www.wikimedia.org user: Tysto, RamirBorja