Chapter 1: Reimagining home in the 21st century
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This chapter sets the stage for a new way of thinking about home advanced in this book: home as practised, a process and an event. The chapter gives an overview of ongoing work in sociology and anthropology, as well as housing, migration and cultural studies, that seeks to relativize notions of home. These accounts in turn build on histories of home that have clearly set out the central, yet often unexamined, role that the domestic plays in social life. This challenge to ‘reimagine home’ opens up contemporary social life for new kinds of analysis, as well as offering us a new set of possibilities within which we can make ourselves at home in relation to others. These radical possibilities are explored in case studies by the authors in this book. We demonstrate that thinking differently about home in this way advances our understanding of processes of belonging. We outline how the authors in this collection explore home in relation to the figure of the stranger and publics, as well as with a focus on practices of dwelling and materialities. Through these frameworks, the collection as a whole suggests that our home does not ‘belong’ to us; rather we ‘belong’ to home. Keywords: home, practices of home, public space, belonging, homing practices, place-making, dwelling, relationality

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