Safe places in domestic spaces: Two-year-olds at play in their homes

Hancock, Roger and Gillen, Julia (2007). Safe places in domestic spaces: Two-year-olds at play in their homes. Children's Geographies, 5(4) pp. 337–351.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/14733280701631775

Abstract

This paper contributes to the growing research literature on children's 'intimate geographies' by focusing on two-year-old children's explorations and play within the domestic spaces of their homes. It draws on video data showing three young girls playing in selected home spaces i.e. a family grocery shop in Peru, the upstairs rooms of a house in America, and the balcony of an apartment in Italy. Through analysis of short video sequences the paper describes the way children use and invest meaning in these spaces. It is argued that the three domestic locations can be seen as 'safe places', in both material and personal senses; and that they enable children's sense of belonging, foster their 'emplaced knowledge' and build on their confidence to explore spaces further afield.

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