The Making of Home: The 500-Year Story of How Our Houses Became Our Homes by Judith Flanders
GT 170 .F53 2015
“The idea that “home” is a special place, a separate place, a place where we can be our true selves, is so obvious to us today that we barely pause to think about it. But, as Judith Flanders shows in her most ambitious work to date, “home” is a relatively new idea.
In The Making of Home, Flanders traces the evolution of the house from the sixteenth to the early twentieth century across northern Europe and America, showing how the homes we know today bear only a faint resemblance to homes throughout history. What turned a house into a home? Why did northwestern Europe, a politically unimportant, sociologically underdeveloped region of the world, suddenly become the powerhouse of the Industrial Revolution, the capitalist crucible that created modernity? While investigating these important questions, Flanders uncovers the fascinating development of ordinary household items – from cutlery, chairs, and curtains, to fitted kitchens, plumbing, and windows – while also dismantling many domestic myths.
In this prodigiously researched and engagingly written book, Flanders elegantly draws together the threads of religion, history, economics, technology, and the arts to show not merely what happened, but why it happened: how we ended up in a world where we can all say, like Dorothy in Oz, “There’s no place like home.””
– publisher description