The term topophilia was coined by the geographer Yi-Fu Tuan of the University of Wisconsin and is defined as the affective bond with one’s environment—a person’s mental, emotional, and cognitive ties to a place. During a transition we need topophilia.
A strong sense of place can help us weather the storm of questions that emerge during a transition….where will I work? how will I pay my rent? who will be my friends? or one of my favorites stated by many a millennial and baby boomer…”What do I want to be when I grow up? ”
Aldo Leopold, like contemporary nature essayists Gary Snyder and Annie Dillard, see places as defined not merely by its appearance and topographical features. “It must be recognized for its essential qualities, those forces that give a place its life, its ‘beingness.’ ” Our topophilia places often give us our “beingness” during transition. [Read more…]