A rapidly growing number of double homes connect different parts of Europe in new ways. The second home can be a cottage in the woods, an apartment in the Costa del Sol or a restored farm house in Tuscany. However, other forms of double homes must be added to these landscapes of leisure. There are long distance commuters who spend most of their week in an overnight flat, in a caravan on a dreary parking lot or at a construction site. Economic migrants dream of a house 'back home' for vacations or retirement. Dual homes come in all shapes and sizes -- from the caravans of touring circus artists to people turning sailboats into a different kind of domestic space. This special issue of "Ethnologic Europaea" captures some dimensions of lives that are anchored in two different homes. How are such lives organised in time and space in terms of identification, belonging and emotion? How do they, in very concrete terms, render material transnational lives?
The next issue of the journal (2008:1) will take such a comparative perspective into another direction as the authors will consider different kinds of research strategies to achieve European comparisons and to gain new cultural perspectives on European societies and everyday life.
Regina Bendix is professor at Georg-August Universitat, Gottingen.