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House as home : emotions centred design for disability

By Jill M. Franz, Grace Bitner and Natalie Wright


In this paper we highlight how current approaches to design for disability have failed to consider the emotional needs not only of those with disabilities but their families and other carers as well. In conjunction with this, we demonstrate through a review of literature the significance of the house, the home and home in the support and growth of the person as a whole in association with their loved ones, and the potential inequity that arises when the emotional and holistic dimensions of 'being' are neglected. With a growing trend nationally and internationally away from group and shared housing, a greater focus on the family and their home is required. However, as research has shown, home for families where a family member has a disability is not necessarily a positive experience; it can be a source of stress, work, conflict and burden, arousing emotions ranging from loss of control through guilt. As proposed in the paper, consideration of the negative as well as positive emotions demands exploration of the 'middle ground' between institutions and home-based care models. This paper outlines the beginning of one such exploration

Topics: 120101 Architectural Design, 120106 Interior Design, Design, Disability, Emotion
Publisher: IIT Institute of Design
Year: 2010
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