Interdisciplinary perspectives on place

F-B. Mocnik, René Westerholt

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
26 Downloads (Pure)


The genius loci of many places is beyond description. Beyond description in the sense that we are not able to linguistically express what it feels like to be in this place, or whatit is that ultimately makes this place. For example, how could we describe the familiarityand the sense of belonging that we usually feel when we are at home, a place of origin.Home as a place can develop a very special identity and give us love, security, and comfort,but for some may evoke anxiety and fear instead, such as in cases of domestic violence.Only when we develop personal bounds to the flat, the building, the neighbourhood, orthe city in which we live, does this feeling of home become accessible to us. Without thedistinctive everyday routine, the habitus, and the familiarity, and perhaps also withoutthe will to engage with the place, it never becomes a home. And this being elsewhere isthe feeling Dorothy Gale has when she, in the film The Wizard of Oz, is whisked away toMunchkinland in the Land of Oz. She longs for home and wants to leave Munchkinland,but as we all know, this turns out not to be an easy task. Dorothy’s famous and recitativelyrepeated saying “There’s no place like home” embodies the previously described specialaura of home to which she longs to return. Even if it remains unclear throughout the filmwhether Dorothy was only dreaming or really in the Land of Oz, this suggests again thatin many senses home is beyond compare

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-94
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Spatial Information Science
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jan 2022




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