S P A C E | Call for submissions: ‘Belonging’

S P A C E is taking a new direction at present and I am calling for submissions for future issues of our zine. There is no cost to apply or for reading fees, though donations are welcome anytime to keep this ad-free and sponsor-less mini-mag going. I want to curate a set of issues on the theme, ‘Belonging.’


What does belonging mean today?

During the pandemic, I was in Việt Nam and off the radar from every single identity I’ve ever been even half associated with.

‘Stuck’ there for 20 months, all told, I found a new definition of ‘belonging’ based on some gut feeling style things that I’d learned thanks to personally going on the road with a pre-covid zeal to create Atelier S P A C E popups on the road, in Southeast Asia and Northern Europe. I must have met 500 people. I made zines with about 5. It takes time to build relationships of quality, the very relationships that then lead to the conversations that make sense to document, carefully and honestly, in the zines. The archive is here.

For me. I found that. Where I was. It was quite incredible to see that what I had sensed through exploring the fields as what I feel means something (regular interactions over time with a few), is also the upshot of what counts for belonging, according to a paper from Harvard scholars:

‘The need is for frequent, nonaversive interactions within an ongoing relational bond.’


Quite interesting to note the authors say:

‘The notion that people need relationships characterized by both regular contact and an ongoing bond has been anticipated to some degree by Weiss (1973; see also Shaver & Buhrmester, 1983), who suggested that feelings of loneliness can be precipitated either by an insufficient amount of social contact (social loneliness) or by a lack of meaningful, intimate relatedness (emotional loneliness). Weiss’s distinction has been criticized on conceptual and empirical grounds (e.g., Paloutzian & Janigian, 1987; Perlman, 1987), and efforts to operationalize and test the distinction have met with mixed results (DiTommaso & Spinner, 1993; Saklofske & Yackulic, 1989; Vaux, 1988). In our view, the difficulty with this distinction arises from the assumption that people have a need for mere social contact and a separate need for intimate relationships. Rather, the need is for regular social contact with those to whom one feels connected. From an evolutionary perspective, relationships characterized by both of these features would have greater survival and reproductive value than would relationships characterized by only one. Accordingly, the need to belong should be marked by both aspects.’


Discussing the meaning of belonging

What is belonging, in 2023?

Related, is my post, What is Community.

What does the idea of ‘Belonging’ mean to you? Share your ideas through the contact form, here’s a link.


Note: I won’t be able to reply to every submission, but if you are selected to be part of the zine ‘Belonging,’ I will be in touch.

There is no fee to submit something to be considered for publication in S P A C E. Thanks for thinking of us.