Meaning in hoarding: perspectives of people who hoard on clutter, culture and agency
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractHoarding has become increasingly prominent in clinical practice and popular culture in recent years, giving rise to extensive research and commentary. Critical responses in the social sciences have criticised the cultural assumptions built in to the construct of ‘hoarding disorder’ and expressed fears that it may generate stigma outweighing its benefits; however, few of these studies have engaged directly with ‘hoarders’ themselves. This paper reports on in-depth, semi-structured interviews with ten individuals living in England, who received assessment and intervention for hoarding from Social Services. Their narratives drew on the cultural repertoire of values and discourses around waste and worth, the mediation of sociality and relationships through material objects, physical constraints on keeping order, and the role played by mental health. Analysing these perspectives anthropologically shows how dominant models of hoarding, such as the DSM-5 paradigm, potentially lend themselves to reductionist understandings that efface the meaning ‘hoarding’ may have and thereby deny agency to the person labelled as ‘hoarder’. More culturally informed analysis, by contrast, affords insights into the complex landscape of value, waste, social critique, emotion, interpersonal relationships and practical difficulties that may underlie hoarding cases, and points the way to more person-centred practice and analysis.
CitationOrr D, Preston-Shoot M, Braye S (2017) 'Meaning in hoarding: perspectives of people who hoard on clutter, culture and agency', Anthropology and Medicine, 26 (3), pp.263-279.
PublisherTaylor and Francis
JournalAnthropology and Medicine
The following license files are associated with this item:
- Creative Commons
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as Green - can archive pre-print and post-print or publisher's version/PDF
- [Hoarding Disorder in DSM-5: Clinical description and cognitive approach].
- Authors: Kalogeraki L, Michopoulos I
- Issue date: 2017 Apr-Jun
- The role of adult attachment and social support in hoarding disorder.
- Authors: Medard E, Kellett S
- Issue date: 2014 Sep
- Hoarding symptoms and workplace impairment.
- Authors: Mathes BM, Henry A, Schmidt NB, Norberg MM
- Issue date: 2019 Sep
- Comparison of object and animal hoarding.
- Authors: Frost RO, Patronek G, Rosenfield E
- Issue date: 2011 Oct 3
- [Diogenes syndrome and Hoarding disorder: Same or different?]
- Authors: Lavigne B, Hamdan M, Faure B, Merveille H, Pareaud M, Tallon E, Bouthier A, Clément JP, Calvet B
- Issue date: 2016 Oct