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Wednesday, April 26 • 10:15am - 10:35am
Sentimental Objects And Their Effect On International Students’ Personal Space

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The sentimental objects international students bring from home play a role in their orientation of personal space by helping to create a home away from home. Through examining relationships between international students and their objects from childhood, traveling, or gained through important life events, the author provides insight into how people claim space and how such objects alter space. The object itself has a specific meaning which is assigned by the owner and in turn projects its meaning to the space around it. When the owner leaves to go abroad, in this case to study, it seems it was crucial for the owner to bring their objects with them not only out of necessity such as clothes, toothbrush etc., but also out of personal attachment as with a teddy bear, a necklace etc. Once these objects are in their new space, the owner then appears to feel more at home within a previously unknown space. Without the objects physically being there with the international student, the meaning it holds is not transcended. In order to create a home abroad, international students use their objects as a source of personal meaning and such meaning is projected onto the space around them in order to claim the space as theirs as well as create a temporary home. Using anthropological theory to outline and explicate this process of bringing sentimental objects from home to create a temporary home while abroad, the author pieces together a story of home told through the objects international students just cannot leave behind when traveling abroad.


Wednesday April 26, 2017 10:15am - 10:35am PDT
237 Zageir Hall