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Caravans: Lives on Wheels in Contemporary Europe

Author/EditorHoyer Leivestad, Hege (Author)
ISBN: 9781350132450
Pub Date19/09/2019
BindingPaperback
Pages194
Dimensions (mm)234(h) * 156(w)
In Caravans, Hege Hoyer Leivestad opens the caravan door to understand how daily life is organised among Britons and Swedes who have relocated, either seasonally or permanently, to mobile homes. Leivestad investigates how the caravan and campsite come to fit and challenge conventional domestic ideals.
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In Caravans, Hege Hoyer Leivestad opens the caravan door to understand how daily life is organised among Britons and Swedes who have relocated, either seasonally or permanently, to mobile homes. Leivestad investigates how the caravan and campsite come to fit and challenge conventional domestic ideals, and how the static mobile caravan can nurture ideas of freedom even when it is standing still.

With sensitivity and an awareness of the humour and pathos of the lives of her subjects, Leivestad closely examines the shaping of the European camping phenomenon and its day-to-day pleasures and pains, ranging from friendships ties to conflictive bingo nights, from nosy and noisy neighbours to fake fireplaces and rotten awning floors. As the first ethnographic study of caravan life in Europe, Caravans offers a refreshing take on contemporary mobility debates, showing how movement can best be understood by taking a detailed look at certain specific mundanities in material culture.

This rich and topical ethnography is a must-read for students of anthropology, human geography and architecture, and for those with an interest in the possibilities and perils of a life on wheels.

In Caravans, Hege Hoyer Leivestad opens the caravan door to understand how daily life is organised among Britons and Swedes who have relocated, either seasonally or permanently, to mobile homes. Leivestad investigates how the caravan and campsite come to fit and challenge conventional domestic ideals, and how the static mobile caravan can nurture ideas of freedom even when it is standing still.

With sensitivity and an awareness of the humour and pathos of the lives of her subjects, Leivestad closely examines the shaping of the European camping phenomenon and its day-to-day pleasures and pains, ranging from friendships ties to conflictive bingo nights, from nosy and noisy neighbours to fake fireplaces and rotten awning floors. As the first ethnographic study of caravan life in Europe, Caravans offers a refreshing take on contemporary mobility debates, showing how movement can best be understood by taking a detailed look at certain specific mundanities in material culture.

This rich and topical ethnography is a must-read for students of anthropology, human geography and architecture, and for those with an interest in the possibilities and perils of a life on wheels.

Hege Hoyer Leivestad is Postdoctoral Researcher in Social Anthropology at Stockholm University, Sweden.

AcknowledgementsCaravan and Camping GlossaryIntroduction: Standing StillChapter 1 Caravans: 'These cupboards look like plastic'Chapter 2 Camp: 'You like to be visible'Chapter 3 Circumstances: 'Why don't we just sell the house, all our things and leave?'Chapter 4 Containers: 'You won't even see there's a caravan in there'Chapter 5 Community: 'We have found here what we can't find at home anymore'Chapter 6 Conclusion: Troubling TemporalitiesEpilogueReferencesNotes

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