SHCY 2013: Plenary Session

Annmarie Valdes, 3rd year PhD Student at Loyola University recaps the Plenary Session on Day 1 of the conference. This session dealt with the ideas of spaces of childhood.

Plenary June 25, 2013: The Spaces of Childhood: A conversation on rooms as evidence

First I would say that a small blog post cannot fully address the many conversations this plenary will no doubt inspire—including conversations that will occur after the conference.

The presenters of this Plenary each gave a small talk on four key spaces of Childhood: the Library, Museum, School and Orphanage. Each of these spaces included a contextualized account of the arrangement of the space, both as physical space and how this space was a reflection of the cultural, social and economic reality of the world that each of these spaces were conceptualized and used. Although the presenters are careful to distinguish that how spaces are used may not follow the original intention of the space, as it was intended by architects/builders. They also underscore the interplay of power by local and/or regional actors in different regions that these spaces were found. How a particular community or particular individuals appropriate space is an interesting question and can be addressed in part by these micro-histories about space.

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