Home, the culture of nature and the meanings of gardens in late modernity

Mark Bhatti, Andrew Church

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The growth in the provision of gardens has been an important feature of housing in the UK during the 20th century, and yet the significance of the humble domestic garden has been neglected in studies of housing and home. This paper examines the role of the garden in the meaning of home, and draws on theoretical discussions of nature, environmental risk and social uncertainty in late modernity. Secondary empirical data is used to investigate the changing uses of gardens and practices of gardening. A survey of garden owners provides primary empirical data to examine meanings of gardens and personal experiences of nature. The paper concludes that the garden is an important site for privacy, sociability and sensual connections to nature, and these activities can be understood as negotiations and practices to address the social and environmental paradoxes of late modern life.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37-51
Number of pages15
JournalHousing studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2004


  • garden
  • nature
  • the home


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