Clutter Moves in Old Age Homecare

Peter Lutz

    Research output: Conference Article in Proceeding or Book/Report chapterBook chapterResearchpeer-review


    This chapter introduces the notion of clutter moves as an experimental heuristic for tracing how movement threads together a range of cluttered entities in old age homecare ecologies. In particular it is concerned with older people and their cluttered technologies. It is based on empirical data originating from an ethnographic study of old age homecare in the United States. Here the category of home clutter was revealed as more complex than it is commonly portrayed in popular or scholarly accounts, especially gerontology and geriatric–related literature on falling risks. This literature frequently cites general household clutter as a hazard in the domestic environment. In such reports moving around with cluttered things tends to threaten a dangerous outcome for older people. But what other feasible vistas emerge when the analytical attention is focused explicitly on relational movements between older people and their cluttered collections of homely things? To provide an adequate answer, the chapter suggests that the moves between collecting and distributing clutter must be considered. It then will highlight how home clutter may enable people with reduced mobility additional movements not always readily apparent. The chapter ends with reflections on the notion of clutter technology to extend the heuristic of clutter moves. This is offered to help to rethink new technologies in relation to old age homecare ecologies.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationNew Technologies and Emerging Spaces of Care
    EditorsMichael Schillmeier, Miquel Domenech
    Number of pages17
    Place of PublicationAldershot
    Publication date2010
    ISBN (Print)978-0-7546-7864-9
    Publication statusPublished - 2010


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