Homelessness Felt

Catherine Robinson


Abstract

The felt—as both methodology and experiential terrain—remains under-explored and under-theorised in research on homelessness.  This experimental piece traces the multi-sensory engagement of ethnographic and biographic fieldwork undertaken for separate projects with homeless people in two capital cities on Australia’s east coast.  The epistemological contributions and emotional dimensions of seeing, tasting, touching, smelling and listening are explored.  Through a series of short ‘felt’ reflections, consideration of the critical role of corporeality in coming to know and inscribe the experiences of others is prompted.  The feeling, researching body is posited as central to new, productive and holistic intertwinings with felt-experience and the mixed trajectories of grief, humour, violence and trauma that often characterise persistent homelessness are made vivid. 

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