The ‘social’ within our walls: stamped bricks as hidden socio-material entanglements

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Berki, Márton
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As a result of the materialist (re-)turn in cultural geography and beyond, an exceptionally broadvariety of matters and things has been taken into scholarly consideration. In spite of this richand still rapidly expanding work, however, almost no attention has been paid to one of ourmost mundane, most everyday material objects – brick. Therefore, on the example of Hungarian‘stamped bricks’, this paper shows how the whole spectrum of the ‘social’ might be representedin an utterly material form, on bricks – including ideology, politics, class relations, religionand spirituality, naturecultures, even sexuality. Connected to these, as the main theoreticalcontributions of the paper, I develop two arguments. First, I posit that in contrast to mostrepresentations, the ones on stamped bricks are ‘normally’ hidden. Second, I also argue that asthick and solid as bricks are, at the same time they may also be as highly sensitive litmus papers ofchanging societal conditions and relations. Hence, based on the examples of the paper, stampedbricks are presented as hidden socio-material entanglements.
pecsétes tégla , kulturális földrajz , történet , történeti földrajz
Cultural Geographies OnlineFirst pp. 1-18. (2022)