People, Places and Possessions
Central to human life and experience, habitation forms a context for enquiry within many disciplines. This collection brings together perspectives on human habitation in the fields of anthropology, archaeology, social history, material culture, literature, art and design, and architecture. Significant shared themes are the physical and social structuring of space, practice and agency, consumption and gender, and permanence and impermanence. Topics range from archaeological artefacts to architectural concepts, from Romano-British consumption to the 1950s Playboy apartment, from historical elite habitation to present-day homelessness, from dwelling «on the move» to the crisis of household dissolution, and from interior design to installation art. Not only is this volume a rich resource of varied aspects and contexts of habitation, it also provides compelling examples of the potential for interdisciplinary conversations around significant shared themes.
Part III: Diminished Habitation
Part III Diminished Habitation Damian Robinson 8 A Home on the Waves: The Archaeology of Seafaring and Domestic Space ABSTRACT For the people who live and work aboard ships on voyages far from their terrestrial homes, they become much more than pieces of technology. Through the agency of the crew and their material culture domestic spaces are created allowing ships to become transitory homes away from homes. This chapter investigates this phenomenon in contemporary seafaring, where domesticity is related to the welfare of the crew and is a matter of avoiding fatigue and improving safety through regulation. Homes on the waves can also be detected in the archaeology of ancient shipwrecks through the same distinct combination of meaning- fully patterned material culture set within the spatial structure of the vessel that is seen in seafaring today. The Mary Rose, a Great Ship from the English navy of Henry VIII, and the glass wreck from the anchorage of Serçe Limanı, Turkey, are used as case studies to illustrate how such homes can be reconstructed. At the heart of this investigation are the ship’s crew – be they ancient or modern – and the active role that they play in making spaces habitable and in doing so creating homes upon the waves. She’s not a machine. She’s far more than a machine. She’s a home. — Captain ‘Griff’ Griffiths, HMS Tireless (Hennessy and Jinks 2015: 34) Introduction In a volume that deals with the concepts of the domestic environment, this chapter may stand out...
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