Location and Place
Distinctions between location and place can be illustrated by the difference between the terms house and home. House is mapped using co-ordinate points or postal addresses. Home, although alluding to house, is both a perception and recollection. A location is a position. Place, on the other hand, is a more elusive term, because it is derived from lived experience and personal introspection. Place is the product of our memories and our fantasies. The following text and images are taken from Rumours are Always Time written by Tim Etchells and performed by Forced Entertainment.
All this used to be a desert, and before that it was mud. This is where the shoot out started, and this is where the lovers fell in love, and this is where the barricades were. This is where they found the children, and this is where the bridge collapsed and this is where the birds flocked, and this is where the alarm was raised. And isn’t this the place where you walked each evening?
This text reveals location to be a fixed spatial reference, acting as both a setting and context for interaction. Location may help better define place, but a sense of place is difficult to ascertain, as is shown by the text’s final contrasting question.
- Emma Posey (UK), University of Wales Institute, Cardiff (UWIC), UK
Full text p. 50-51