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Belonging

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By: Margarethe Kusenbach | Edited by: Paul Atkinson, Sara Delamont, Alexandru Cernat, Joseph W. Sakshaug & Richard A. Williams Published: 2020 | Length: 2 | DOI: |
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The idea of “belonging” implies the existence of a meaningful connection between a person and a sociospatial environment. One belongs where one is deeply familiar and comfortable with the surroundings and/or its people, where one fits in. A thoughtful scholarly definition of belonging describes it as “a socially constructed, embedded process in which people reflexively judge the suitability of a given site as appropriate given their social trajectory and their position in other fields” (Savage, Bagnall, & Longhurst, 2005, p. 12).

In establishing belonging, people make interpretive judgments about their personal fit within a given setting, whether it be a neighborhood, city, or country. These cognitive and emotional interpretations draw on, and align with, other life experiences and identities. The definition emphasizes the dynamic character of ...

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