Gaston Bachelard once said: “the house shelters day-dreaming, the house protects the dreamer, the house allows one to dream in peace.”
For the second Geography Webbynar of the UP Department of Geography, for academic year 2022-2023, Assistant Professor Ryan Alvin Pawilen will deliver a talk entitled Housing Culture and Emotions: A Countermapping Exercise with the Laguna Historical Data Papers, 1950s on Thursday, 13 October 2022 at 5:00PM.
Drawing from cultural geography, social anthropology, and cultural history, the focus is on the cultural role of the house as a series of chambers echoing folklore and emotions. Utilizing the Historical Data Papers compiled during the 1950s, Prof Pawilen investigates house-related beliefs in Laguna. Emotions evoked by beliefs will be explored together with a (counter)mapping of interior rooms following theoretical inspirations from cultural and feminist geographers. By using folklore as source, this presentation depicts an intimate place that houses private experiences which connect them to the public sphere through shared cultural beliefs. By adding the aspect of emotions, the resulting maps support the idea that the house is not necessarily the home, and that the home is not a static and purely positive place. The house can also be a physical manifestation or mental image filled with frustration, disappointments, sadness, and even power struggles.
Prof Pawilen is an assistant professor of the Division of History, Department of Social Sciences, University of the Philippines Los Baños. He completed his degrees in Social Sciences (Social Anthropology and Psychology) at the University of the Philippines Baguio. He also obtained his MA in Philippine Studies from the Asian Center, University of the Philippines Diliman and currently a PhD student in History with cognates in Geography from the same university. His research interests include social and cultural history, martial arts, intercultural interaction, and heritage.