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People, Places and Possessions


Edited By Antony Buxton, Linda Hulin and Jane Anderson

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.

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5. London in Pieces: A Biography of a Lost Urban Streetscape (Matthew Jenkins / Charlotte Newman)


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5 London in Pieces: A Biography of a Lost Urban Streetscape


London’s West End in the eighteenth century is frequently regarded as the epitome of urban improvement and Georgianisation. This chapter combines material culture and documentary sources to present a series of building biographies for Tilney Street that imaginatively recreate the physical urban landscapes that modern development has overridden. Tilney Street highlights the nuanced nature of Georgian domestic living where, even in the elite location of Mayfair, wealth, social position and up-to-date fashions do not align. This methodology generates biographies about communities and individuals who owned, occupied and visited these buildings at the dawn of modernity. These close-grained biographies explore and critique wider ideas of urban social practices.

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