This blog will comprise a collection of ephemera, mess and miscellaneous artifacts reflecting on the writer's life.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Home is where the heart is


is our working title for our paper for this conference.
We hope you can all come.

Andy and I have realised that homes instantiate complex emotions.

This is how he puts it more eloquently than me:


The home and the house are at the centre of family life. Running from the family are these connecting identities between the family’s identity leading to these objects and artefacts which are imbued with special meanings of the family. They tell stories of intergenerational significance, which, if they can be deciphered, paint a picture of whole family and individual identities.


•These household items are visual triggers for oft-recounted tales which, through embellishment, over time, have taken on mythical status, with shared family legends, which, when unpicked, reveal a great deal about that particular family’s values and its individual members and the broader culture of which they are part.


•Narratives bound up in ornaments, d├ęcor, artwork, clothing, jewellery, reveal the traditions, values, mantras, passions, challenges, faith, that forms the basis of that family’s past present and future existence.

(Andy Pollard)

This is so good that I don't need to add anything.

I have however been reading Bachelard The Poetics of Space.

In there I read:


A house constitutes a body of images that give mankind proofs or illusions
of stability. We are constantly re-imagining its reality: to distinguish all
these images would be to describe the soul of the house; it would mean
developing a veritable psychology of the house. (Bachelard 1958:17)

I like that idea, that houses have souls.

At the moment, our house is in mourning for our cat, Lizzie, whose shadow is everywhere.

Even the fish is off its food. The hamster is quiet.

As Molly rather heartlessly said, 'One down, two to go!'

1 comment:

Mary Plain said...

this one really resonated with me as my sister and I have spent the last three days in my dad's house, now empty, and even though it is not the house we grew up in there is so much there that tells the narrative of our childhoods and our parents' lives before that. And Molly's comment really made me laugh!