Honors College Thesis


Photography, Birth Origin, and Sense of Home Public Deposited

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  • For many, the concept of Home resides in the subconscious; an idea that is present, but not questioned, or even realized. However, this concept may be particularly troublesome to define for those who have left their homes in pursuit of a different life. The concept of Home becomes a conscious dilemma that many immigrants must confront. Inspired by photovoice, the current study examines how the construct of home differs between people born in the U.S., and those that were born elsewhere and came to the United States. Participants in this study are between the ages of 18-22, unmarried, either born in the U.S. or abroad, and fluent in English. The main measures in this study include verbal interviews, photographs taken by participants, and a Sense of Belonging questionnaire. Results of the Sense of Belonging questionnaire indicated a significant group difference in connection to country of birth, suggesting U.S. born participants felt more connected to their country of birth compared to participants born abroad. Both groups constructed home with the same five primary categories: basic needs, time, physical, sensory, and personal aspects of home, the microculture of home, and the complexities of home. The abroad group included an additional category, identity. In addition to uncovering the ways that both groups construct the idea of home, I also discovered some of the fundamental values and protections we seek as human beings, regardless of background.
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