A Home Then, A Home Now
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This thesis explores how Hong Kong Canadians remember, inhabit, and imagine their homes to develop a process for positioning transnational belonging within the built environment. In response to discriminatory migration and zoning policies, historic migration from Hong Kong formed built networks of belonging and agency within Canada’s cities and suburbs that have been largely overlooked by Western architectural scholarship. A Home Then, A Home Now connects the past and present homes of five people who moved from Hong Kong to Canada between 1955–1975, to identify embedded material elements, transnational routines, and memories that relate to histories of migration. Drawing from migration scholarship and participatory methods, I worked back and forth with participants through a series of phone interviews to collaboratively draw their childhood homes and imagine changes to their current homes. We annotated these plan and perspective drawings with lived experiences that navigate spatial purpose, transnational networks, and Hong Kong Canadian identity. By generating spatial knowledge from unheard voices, this research records “other” histories to question dominant forms of architectural history, representation, discourse, and design. This process exemplifies how design disciplines can learn from everyday sites of diasporic memory to better record and imagine home in a rapidly globalizing world.
Cite this version of the work
Natalie Jianyi Kopp (2022). A Home Then, A Home Now. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/18206