How Does The Life Course Influence The Meaning Of Home For Six Baby Boomers?
Authors: Board, M.
Start date: 23 April 2015
This paper will explore the meaning of home for six people born between 1945 and 1964, members of a cohort some call the baby boomers. An innovative approach was used to reveal the meaning of the difficult to articulate concept of home. A four stage approach was adopted that helped not only reveal the meaning of home but also the influence of the life course on an individual’s interpretation of that meaning. Asking the participants to take their own photographs of what home means to them, then describing the significance of these in a photo elicitation interview were the first two stages. These stages allowed the participants to tell their own story significantly reducing researcher bias. The third stage was inviting panels of independent people to review the photographs to see if they could interpret the meaning of home of the participants. The final stage was interpreting all of these layers to produce a photo story book of the participants meaning of home. The layered approach used in the methods helped reveal the taken for granted experience of the home. The participant generated photographs and participant led interview also revealed how their life course influenced their meaning of home. During the life course of the baby boomers there have been significant social changes which can influence the meaning of home having implications for policy and health and social care. The paper will conclude with suggestions for further research.