Friday, August 24, 2012

The Concept and Meaning of Place for Young Palestinian Children

Here is the link for my latest publication exploring young children's experience in the oPt.

Young children’s lives are shaped by the socio-spatial, and there is a growing body of literature examining how they interact with place. However, there has been little investigation into what happens when young children’s places are compromised by adverse situations, such as war and political violence. By adopting a socio-spatial approach, this paper aims to illustrate how the concept of place interrelates with the experiences of young children and their families who experience political violence, with the occupied Palestinian territories as an example. Using an interdisciplinary approach, my research begins by exploring the multiple and diverse definitions of space and place. I then turn to an analysis of the places that are specific for children in times of political violence. In order to further understand how young children conceptualize place as a meaning-making process and a source of well-being, certain critical elements of place must be understood. Though there are many relevant concepts to explore, I have limited my inquiry to two elements—place access and place use—that are central to an understanding of place, and which can be applied to the lived experiences of young children affected by political violence in the occupied Palestinian territories.

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