I just returned from the major conference in my field, The Association for Literature and the Environment, where I presented on tiny house rhetoric and philosophies. (You can find the conference specifics here). I am happy to report the paper was so well received that not only did I field enthusiastic questions of interest and support, I was also asked to speak at the 2014 Sustainability Symposium at Concordia College in MN. I must say, I was very much encouraged by people’s responses. As my paper was a critique of some of the problematic and privileged romantic rhetoric surrounding the tiny house movement, I was nervous that the critique would come off as non-constructive criticism. In fact, it was just the opposite. The talk roused interest as well as very productive discussion on some of the unique potential in the movement, and how the movement might be developing. It was also wonderful to spend quality time with the many, many University of Oregon faculty, alum and current grad students that make up such a vibrant part of the ASLE community. Proof: (and this is only SOME of us)
(Photo credit: Ashley Elaine Reis)
I mentioned that I would post the paper here, but for the sake of publication trickiness, I won’t be putting it up in its entirety. However, if you would like to read a .pdf of the talk, feel free to email me and I will send it on.
Update: a longer version of the talk was published in a volume on sustainable cities. You can find it here.
In the meantime, one of the most interesting histories I ran across in my research was the very old tradition of housetrucks- here are some GREAT photos:
These date from 1924, ’26, ’64, and roughly 1980 (from left to right, top to bottom) Also, in a week or so I plan on posting notes from some of the most compelling talks I attended – smart people sharing smart things ROCKS. And check out the tiny house (and me) in the UO magazine: here (page 18).
Loads of love and belief in the power of small changes, April