International Perspectives on Culture, Identity, and Belonging
Edited By Margarethe Kusenbach and Krista E. Paulsen
Part Three: Community and Belonging
195 Part Three: Community and Belonging The scholars included in this final section take up similar questions to those featured in the first two, such as how where one lives impacts individuals’ sense of self, the importance of feeling in control of one’s daily environment, and how a sense of home is socially and interaction‑ ally constructed. However, the following chapters broaden the focus from individuals and their dwellings to neighborhoods and communi‑ ties. They examine feelings of home and belonging in places as diverse as US mobile home parks, gentrifying neighborhoods in Germany and The Netherlands, and UK urban quarters and suburbs. Margarethe Kusenbach’s “Place Feelings and Life Stories in Florida Mobile Home Communities” conveys how residents of one of the most stigmatized housing types in the US make sense of their homes and communities. The chapter draws primarily upon interviews with over 100 households in mobile home communities in the Tampa Bay area of Florida. Kusenbach notes that the residents are keenly aware of the mar‑ ginal reputation of their homes and communities, and that this stigma demands of residents explicit attention to the places they call home. She finds that individuals’ place feelings, i.e. the emotional connections with the places in which they live, vary widely from one person and place to another, yet they also appear to be related to larger community level fac‑ tors. In addition, individuals’ personal framings of their biographies—life stories in Kusenbach’s terms—provide insight into how people experi‑ ence home...
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