Neighbours, neighbouring and acquaintanceship: In dialogue with David Morgan

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In 2012, David Morgan gave a talk entitled ‘Neighbours, neighbouring and acquaintanceship – Some further thoughts’ at the University of Turku, Finland. In this paper we engage in dialogue with Morgan’s talk, as well as his 2009 book Acquaintances, in particular the observations he made about the simultaneous closeness and distance that characterises neighbouring relationships. We suggest that using the metaphors of elasticity and stickiness instead allows us to explore neighbouring relationships as more than inhabiting a space between intimates and strangers (Morgan, 2009), but as textured and messy everyday relationalities. We consider also how the ‘stickiness’ of this relationship as well as the significance of its ‘elasticity’ are likely to have been heightened during COVID-19 lockdowns, which have altered the usual configurations of intimate and stranger relationships. In doing so, our aim is to contribute further to Morgan’s theorising of the nature of neighbouring as a specific form of acquaintanceship.

Bibliographical metadata

Original languageEnglish
JournalFamilies, Relationships and Societies
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 17 Jun 2021