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SIEF2011 10th Congress: Lisbon, Portugal.
17-21 April 2011

(P126)

Space, material culture and consumption

Location Tower A, Piso 0, Room 5
Date and Start Time 18 Apr, 2011 at 11:30

Convenors

Filomena Silvano (CRIA-NOVA FCSH) email
Philip Cabau Esteves (Instituto Politécnico de Leiria, ESAD.CR) email
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Short Abstract

Les communications presentées dans ce panel s'intègrent dans un champ de travail qu'articule les études de l'espace avec ceux de la culture matériel et de la consommation.

Long Abstract

Les communications presentées dans ce panel s'intègrent dans un champ de travail qu'articule les études de l'espace avec ceux de la culture matériel et de la consommation. Un premier groupe de communications privilégie la maison entant qu'espace d'analyse. A partir de cette focalisation territoriale, les auteurs s'interrogent sur les rôles que l'espace et les objets assument dans la construction des mémoires personnelles et familiales, dans la construction/négociation des identités (notamment celles de classe et de genre) et dans la construction de nouveaux styles de vie. Un deuxième groupe de communications présente l'espace publique comme un lieu où les pratiques de consommation (aussi bien l'achat que l'usage de certains biens) s'articulent avec la construction/négociation des relations sociales et des identités.

This panel is closed to new paper proposals.

Papers

Country estates and identities among Rome's "Black" bourgeoisie

Author: Guy Lanoue (Université de Montréal)  email
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Short Abstract

One segment of the Roman bourgeoisie (of several) uses country estates to establish their status, but uniquely, in a community of moral values that runs parallel to State-sanctioned dynamics of power.

Long Abstract

I examine the dynamics of bourgeois identities in Rome, concentrating on the manner (and reasons why) in which country estates are used to establish status among the so-called "Black" bourgeoisie (composed of descendents of bureaucrats and professionals under the regime of the Papal States, before national unification in 1870). In particular, I argue that their attachment to the "fatherland" (la patria) and their exclusion from conventional power prevents them from playing the status game by deploying standard markers of political or economic power in a highly urbanised context, and so rootedness to a bucolic place becomes a powerful marker of status and identity in post-Unification Rome, largely because country estates and their lifestyles are considered "timeless" in a context where technologies of governance establish official histories and official timelines that exclude this bourgeoisie. This paper is based on several years' research and residence in Rome.

The role of memory in the use of space: dominant emotions in the experiences of different individuals

Author: Rita Batista  email
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Short Abstract

We are trying to verify if different individuals share the same pattern of memories funded in primary emotions when exposed to similar conditions and what is the role of memory in everyday life. The paper reflects on the observation results of the use of the same space by different users.

Long Abstract

Our main goal is to clarify the concepts of memory and emotion in every day life and establish the criteria for intervention in Architecture.

We aim to apply Psychology methodologies to the study of memory and emotion in Architecture, testing the applicability of methods that allow us to "read" the appropriation of space by specific users in rituals of use.

This paper focus at the first exploratory experiments of our study with individuals that voluntarily agree to be observed during the visit to a stenographic arrangement (houses for sale, not inhabited old palaces, or similar). The monitoring should be participatory and systematically recorded in audio-visual support. According to the quality of the collected data, the material will be processed with the application of techniques of content analysis.

The analysis aims to identify the emotions of joy and acceptance, opposed to sadness and disgust (defined by Robert Plutchik in "Emotions and Life: Perspective from Psychology, Biology and Evolution", 2002), that may configure the feeling of love according to the attachment theories, and will be validated by at least one outer judge.

Through this approach to memory and emotion we expect to understand the personal individual processes of (re) construction of architecture meaning and identify invariants that could explain how emotion and memory result from the use of space and, at the same time, dictate that use.

We are also trying to understand what are the physical elements that enable a transformation through use and simultaneously produce (un)expected emotions triggered by memory.

Take it, put it and leave it: some notes about space negotiation at home and the placement of objects

Author: Stella Schrijnemaekers (Fundação Escola de Sociologia de São Paulo)  email
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Short Abstract

This paper intends to show results of a research carried out among middle class families in São Paulo (Brazil)about the meaning of the home. It is based on a study about the relationship between the family members and the objects that fill up the space of the houses.

Long Abstract

This paper intends to show some results of my research carried out among middle class families in São Paulo (Brazil) about the meaning of the home. It is based on a study about the relationship between the family members and the objects that fill up the space. In all houses, not only the parents were interviewed but also sons and daughters over sixteen years old. It was my concern to analyze different opinions existing in all houses visited. It was assumed that objects "talks", in other words, they express all sort of relationship the dwellers maintain among themselves. Therefore, to analyze the way the objects are placed in a determinate space, help us to understand the interactions through the way the objects are displayed or not. Through the study of the interaction between the individuals and the objects it was possible trace a more deeper comprehension about the objects and their respective roles for the families: the local they are placed, how long and how they were exposed give details about the hierarchy of power among the members of a determinate family and how the family's project are dealt.

Anti-consumerist movements in the everyday life of young adults in Finland

Author: Elina Salminen (University of Jyväskylä)  email
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Short Abstract

Consumer criticism gains ground due to the continuous growth of the economy and global warming, but is it just talk? In my paper I outline a research frame for the study of the existing anti-consumerist movements and their meaning in the everyday life of young adults in Finland.

Long Abstract

Global warming has maintained its news value in mass media, but does it have an impact in the everyday life of ordinary people?

Cultural criticism can be considered either as abstract ideals or as concrete ways of doing things. Studies in the field of consumer research have shown that it's easier to have ideals than to live in accordance with them. Is it possible to get a grip on this presumed gap between ideals and daily consumer behavior with the help of ethnological tools? How do people react to the environmental issues like the impending lack of oil or the climate change?

In my paper I outline an ethnological research frame for the study of anti-consumerist movements as devices for control over one's life and for the sense of "doing things right". The study will be a part of a larger study called Mentalities of consumption. I've collected quantitative data about the amount of objects people have in their kitchens, and I will collect more data by interviewing, observing and analyzing written diaries written by young adults in Finland. I've chosen young adults as a target group, because they have supposedly just undergone a major transition in their lives, when they have started their independent life. Possible movements for the study might be organized associations like the Green League of Finland, Greenpeace and Finnish Cloth Diaper Association, underground movements like dumpster diving and anarchist movement or various ways of thinking like animal rights, degrowth.fi etc.

What to wear: dress as situated practice in the social production of structured space

Author: Arja Turunen (University of Helsinki)  email
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Short Abstract

In my paper, I will take a look at how the categories of public/men’s spaces and private/women’s spaces are produced, maintained, and contested by conforming or transgressing the gender-specific dress codes. As an example, I discuss the effects of the introduction of trousers into women’s dress.

Long Abstract

Feminist scholars have argued that the categories of public versus private places are matter of men's/masculine spaces versus women's/feminine spaces. In my proposed paper, I take a look at how the categories of public/men's spaces and private/women's spaces are produced, maintained, and contested by conforming or transgressing the gender-specific dress codes. As an example, I discuss the effects of the introduction of trousers into women's dress.

When we think of space as corporeally practiced, one thing should not be omitted: the fact that human bodies by whose actions and practices the place is turned into space are dressed bodies. By drawing on the theoretical thinking of sociologists Joanne Entwistle (2000) who has defined dress as situated bodily practice, I argue that the dress codes, discourses of dress, and the material qualities of dress play an important role in the social production of space. For example, the wearing a narrow skirt encumbers woman's ability to climb the stairs and to move in different places.

The adoption of trousers eliminated the physical constraints of women's movement. In my paper that is based on my PhD thesis I demonstrate how women's attempts to enter masculine areas of sports and work were interpreted and how it was possible to attach feminine meanings to masculine spaces and, on the other hand, masculine meanings to feminine spaces.

Constructing the shopping centre

Author: Pavel Pospech (Masaryk University)  email
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Short Abstract

This paper describes the process of social construction of shopping centres as specific consumption spaces. It is argued that the shared definitions and spatial meanings are a subject of constant negotation by various actors.

Long Abstract

This paper suggest a cultural, interpretative reading of a shopping centre as a constructed space of consumption. It is argued that a shared cultural definition of a shopping centre is based upon a set of spatial meanings pertaining to it. These meanings include rules of conduct, acceptable social roles, expectations regarding the behaviour of others and, in general, standards of normality, ascribed to this kind of space. Following the works of scholars dealing with urban public space, such as Lyn Lofland, spatial meaning are analysed as bodies of urban knowledge, enabling us to code the given place, make sense of it, and act in a way which is generally accepted as normal in relation to the given space. This paper describes various uses of social control, deviance and territorialisation, as well as "ordinary" everyday actions of various actors in a shopping centre that all take part in producing the spatial meanings. It is argued that these meanings, and with them the very definitions of urban spaces such as shopping centres, are subject to a constant process of negotiation and re-negotiation.

Les magasins de Baixa et Chiado comme memoire et patrimoine

Authors: Guilherme Pereira (CML)  email
Judite Reis (Câmara Municipal de Lisboa)  email
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Short Abstract

Parmi les magasins du centre de Lisbonne, il y a ceux qui ont un decor propre, un patrimoine materiel ou vivant, des memoires, une fabrication, une ambiance, sont reference, “uniques”, emblematiques, ex-libris, maintiennent leur quartier.

Long Abstract

Recenser les magasins existants en ce début du XXIéme siècle, dans le vieux centre de Lisbonne, pour connaitre l'histoire de chaque enterprise, les regrouper par metier, identifier ses savoir-faire, pratiques professionnelles et signaler ses points d'interet decorative, constructif , d'equipement ou de mobilier. Recueil par interview aux proprietaires, gerants et employés et portfolio photographique,

Si beaucoup ont disparu, d'autres se maintiennent et d'autres surgissent. Ont parvient à deceler des groupes de magasins reference dans la memoire collective, avec une valeure en tant que patrimoine materiel ou patrimoine vivant ou immateriel. Il y as les magasins qui sont un ícone par leur activité. D'autres sont "uniques" soit par la disparition de leurs confrères, soit par l'innovation qu'ils representent. Il y a les espaces commerciaux qui creent leur ambiance propre. Et dans ce dernier cas, la date de fondation ce n'est pas ce qui compte, puisque ils peuvent être aussi anciens que recents. Il y a les magasins emblematiques - et les magasins ex-libris de la ville, memoire commune, aquise au long des generations et "reconnue" par les arts, les lettres et les spectacles. Il y a les commerces avec memoires - d'evenements y survenus, de frequentateurs celebres. Finalement les etablissements-marque, devanture d'une entreprise ou d'une marque reputée. Et on decouvre une dynamique de regroupement geographique dans quelques activités nouvelles. Registre contemporain qui se veut non seulement historique mais utile à un espace à rehabiliter - Baixa - ou déjà reabilité - Chiado.

This panel is closed to new paper proposals.