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‘Home is a work in progress’

Where is home?

In his TED talk,

‘Where is home’, Pico Iyer says:

‘The number of people living in a country not their own comes to 220 million…

We represent the 5th largest nation on earth!’


In other words, there are more and more of us who define home in many ways. For example, home could be:

  • Where your blood or ancestry come from;
  • Where you were born or raised or educated;
  • Where you pay your taxes and where do you see your doctor and dentist;
  • The place where you feel most comfortable and where you try to spend most of your time.

Iyer talks about how all those bits of home create ‘A stained glass whole’ – a beautiful metaphor for ones ‘multi-cultural identity.

I agree with him when he says that home has less to do with a piece of soil than with a piece of soul.

This idea of the stained glass identity is powerful in that it permits those millions of us who are from more than one place to realise how natural and beautiful our blend is.

Also, Iyer underlines the fact that identity and ‘community’ are self-created, a work in progress that we, along with those we come into contact with, mould and shape.

Being a global nomad or multi-cultural or mulit-homed is an opportunity to define ourselves and our communities in ways that our non-mobile parents or grandparents could not.

I wonder: though each of us creates a unique pattern, do we have more in common with each other than with our brick and mortar compatriots? What do you think?


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