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Sundown Schoolhouse of QUEER HOME ECONOMICS


Part of Wide Open School at the Hayward Gallery, Southbank Centre, London / June 11 - July 11, 2012 / open Tue to Sun 10:00 - 20:30 (after June 18 from Tue to Fri, 11:00 - 17:30 and Sat & Sun 11:00 - 19:30)

~ Contact info(at)sundownschoolhouse(dot)org with any questions about the program
~ See updates on Wikidiary and interview in BUTT
~ Are you interested in proposing an event, workshop, conversation, meeting, or activity for any open period you see in our schedule below

The Sundown Schoolhouse of Queer Home Economics invites the local queer community to our temporary HQ for an on-going dialog about 'making ourselves at home' with casual and programmed conversing, cooking, crafting, debating, decorating, demonstrating, discussing, dishing, eating, exercising, hanging out, lecturing, moving, performing, reading, speechifying, talking, teaching, and workshopping related to LGBTQ home-making (inspired by the program of ‘home economics’ developed in the 19th century to educate young women in domestic duties). As a place to queer our ideas of home, it is based in the very queer home of an intimate geodesic dome tent installed over a seating platform and conversation pit surrounded by fruit trees on the rooftop terrace of the Hayward Gallery for their pre-Olympics Wide Open School program.

An open call and invitations to the local LGBTQ community leads to periodic daily programming, which might include skill-building workshops (cleaning, cooking, decorating, knitting, gardening, sewing, flower-arranging, baking, cooking, canning...); relationship seminars (counseling, community, family, children, couples...); and activities related to the creative, financial, legal, logistical, political, and social aspects of queer home-making. Casual drop-in activities will otherwise continue from morning to night, such as book clubs, extended craft-making sessions, movement exercises, potluck meals, and general dialog about today's domesticating queer and ways of queering the domestic.

Fritz Haeg, artist and Schoolhouse organizer, is in residence during the first week leading daily events, starting the program on June 11th with an introductory talk Out and In the Homosexual Home, and introducing the new project series Domestic Integrities. Visitors are invited to bring their old clothes, fabrics, linens, towels, etc. to contribute to the communal making of a rug for the HQ.

Brent Pilkey, PhD candidate at the UCL Bartlett School of Architecture, will have a regular presence at the Schoolhouse through the month as co-curator and scholar in residence, organizing events, leading conversations, conducting research, and continuing work on his thesis Queering Heteronormativity at Home.




...10:00 - 11:30 ~ Morning Movement ~ with Fritz Haeg
...11:30 - 13:00 ~ Domestic Integrities ~ with Fritz Haeg
...13:00 - 14:30 ~ Wotever World ~ with Ingo Cando (bring your lunch)
...18:30 - 20:30 ~ Opening Presentation/Conversation~ with Fritz Haeg & Brent Pilkey

...10:00 - 11:30 ~ Morning Movement ~ with Fritz Haeg
...11:30 - 13:00 ~ Domestic Integrities ~ with Fritz Haeg
...15:00 - 17:00 ~ Gay Family Trees ~ with Hera Cook and Lisa Metherell
...17:00 - 20:30 ~ Little Joe Film screenings ~ with Sam Ashby, Little Joe Magazine and Paul Green, Avant Gardening (potluck dinner)

...10:00 - 11:30 ~ Morning Movement ~ with Fritz Haeg
...11:30 - 13:00 ~ Domestic Integrities ~ with Fritz Haeg
...13:00 - 16:00 ~ The Knitted Habitat ~ with Alex Black (soup will be served)
...18:30 - 20:30 ~ Feeling at Home? Queering Home Research ~ with Brent Pilkey (UCL) and Rachel Scicluna (OU) - soup will be served.

...10:00 - 11:30 ~ Morning Movement ~ with Fritz Haeg
...11:30 - 13:00 ~ Domestic Integrities ~ with Fritz Haeg
...14:00 - 16:00 ~ Queer Tupperware Party ~ A film screening with Jeffrey Hinton
...18:30 - 20:30 ~ A Conversation with Margaret Pepper (potluck dinner & soup)

...10:00 - 11:30 ~ Morning Movement ~ with Fritz Haeg
...11:30 - 13:00 ~ Domestic Integrities ~ with Fritz Haeg
...13:00 - 14:00 ~ A Conversation About Gay Squats ~ with Jeffrey Hinton and Matt Cook (bring your lunch)
...14:00 - 17:30 ~ rug crocheting
...17:30 - 21:30 ~ Decor, Dining, and Homo Entertaining ~ with Pablo Leon de la Barra & David Waddington

...11:00 - 20:30 ~ I'm With You ~ all day events co-curated by Christa Holka, Justin Hunt, and Johanna Linsley

...11:00 - 20:30 ~ In Every Dream Home, a Heartache ~ all day events co-curated by Paul Green of Avant Gardeners



Open to view and occasional programming through July 11th ~ Tuesdays to Sundays from 11:00 to 17:30 and Sat & Sun from 11:00 to 19:30 (Closed Mondays).

...14:00 - 19:30 ~ Crafternoon ~ with Alex Black

...15:00 -19:30 ~ Queer Knit London ~

...13:00 - 17:00 ~ Proud Pots ~

...15:00 - 19:00 ~ Faeries on the Roof (Gay Pride Sunday) with the Faeries of Albion ~



~ Morning Movement ~ with Fritz Haeg yoga session, bring your mat if you have one,

~ Domestic Integrities ~ with Fritz Haeg ...bring your old clothes, fabrics, linens, towels, etc. to crochet into an expanding rug for the space while we sit in a circle and discuss any queer domestic issues on our minds.

~ Wotever World ~ with Ingo Cando (bring your lunch)...Ingo Cando, Creative Director and Producer of Wotever World, will present how Wotever has operated since 2003 as a community based non-profit queer arts and culture organisation, creating a safe and respectful home away from home for all sirs, madams and wotevers. Through Bar Wotever and Club Wotever, this collective have turned spaces such as London's Royal Vauxhall Tavern into a public living room for creativity, performance, humour, ideas and politics. Ingo will reflect on how Wotever encourages a sense of belonging, making people who feel excluded from traditionally defined notions of domesticity, feel at home, and will talk about a specific photographic project, 'The Living Room' by AbsolutQueer Photographer.

~ Opening Presentation/Conversation~ with Fritz Haeg & Brent Pilkey...Out and In the Homosexual Home~ with Fritz Haeg / Queering Everyday Space in London: Domesticity and Sexual Identity ~ with Brent Pilkey - A presentation some of work & thoughts related to the queer domesticity, and generally introducing the QHE Schoolhouse, followed by open conversation. BYOB

~ Gay Family Trees ~ with Hera Cook and Lisa Metherell ~ Who or what made you who you are? Participants are invited to bring a queer family momento or photos (which can be copied onsite) or to construct their own (non-blood and blood) tree. Who gave you love? Who helped you to feel and become the person that you are? The pain and stigma, the struggle and the effort, also have a place in our lives. These trees are pictures of the links and paths that are absent in genealogies limited to births and deaths connected by marriages. Family history and genealogy has been an astonishing development in the making of history – and there has also been an enormous growth of alternative networks of love : friends, multiple partners, surrogate, adopted, egg donor children – trees that follow new logics. Your tree need not be peopled only by humans; the formative elements in your life may have been animals or might consist of gardens or places, objects might create the connections. It is the connections and creation that will make it your family tree. Lisa Metherell is an artist and researcher exploring queer encounters with art through a practice-led PhD at Birmingham City University. She has facilitated many creative workshops with people aged from 4 to 80 years old. Dr Hera Cook is an historian of sexuality and emotion and a lecturer at the University of Birmingham. Before becoming an academic she worked in New Zealand theatre and film.

~ Little Joe Film Screenings ~ with Sam Ashby, Little Joe Magazine and Paul Green, Avant Gardening (potluck dinner)...
Little Joe will present a programme of films that investigate our history of queer(ing) domestic spaces through a number of key queer historical figures, including Edward Carpenter, The Bloomsbury Group and Claude Cahun & Marcel Moore. The programme will also include a presentation by Jacinto Astiazarán who will be talking about Julian Eltinge and his lavish Mission-style mansion in Los Angeles. Eltinge was a silent film era female impersonator who gained great success at the time, only to see his career deteriorate as the times turned more conservative during Prohibition. Jacinto is in the research stage for a short film about Eltinge's house.
~ Edward Carpenter (10 mins) - The life of pioneering British gay activist, poet, philosopher and socialist Edward Carpenter is explored in this short documentary segment from a regional British TV show filmed in the mid-1980s.
~ Lover/Other directed by Barbara Hammer (55 mins) - 1920's Surrealist artists Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore come to life in this hybrid documentary by filmmaker Barbara Hammer. Lesbians and step-sisters, the gender-bending artists lived and worked together all their lives. Heroic resisters to the Nazis occupying Jersey Isle during WWII, they were captured and sentenced to death.
~ Carrington directed by Christopher Hampton (121 mins) - Focussing on the unusual relationship between English painter Dora Carrington and homosexual author Lytton Strachey, Carrington also explores the remarkable lives of a group of associated English writers, intellectuals, philosophers and artists best known as the Bloomsbury Group.

~ The Knitted Habitat ~ with Alex Black (lentil, spelt & veg soup will be served!) ~ An informal workshop/circle for beginners and experienced knitters and hookers, making both decorative and functional things for the home.

~ Feeling at Home? Queering Home Research ~ with Brent Pilkey (UCL) and Rachel Scicluna (OU) - co-convened by queer domestic researchers Brent Pilkey (UCL) and Rachel Scicluna (OU)

~ Queer Tupperware Party ~ A film screening with Jeffrey Hinton THE QUEER TUPPERWARE PARTY: a very Queer event that took place in London in the mid-1980s. Residents and friends from 65 Warren Street are featured in the TUPPERWARE PARTY held in Godwin Court, Camden, one of the buildings where the members of the original squat were eventually re-housed. The Tupperware Party features partners in the fashion company BodyMap (David Holah and Stevie Stewart), singer and DJ George O'Dowd (Boy George), DJ and journalist Julia Fodor (Princess Julia), milliner, Stephen Jones, makeup artist, Lesley Chilks, DJ and producer, Jeremy Healy, film maker and artist John Maybury, fashion designer, Eric Holah, DJ Fat Tony, singer, Marylyn and many more. Jeffrey Hinton, born in London, is known mainly for his work as a DJ, playing at numerous iconic clubs all over the world for the past 30 years. Jeffrey is also a film-maker, photographer and music maker. He has one of the largest archives of videos, photographs, music and memorabilia - including his own films - of club, fashion and culture in London from 1977 to the present, and also including footage and documents of New York, Paris, Rio de Janeiro, and many other cities internationally. Jeffrey has worked with many designers, film makers and dancers over the years, including Body Map, Rifat Ozbek, Jasper Conran, Jonathan Saunders, Catherine Hamnet, Meadham and Kirchhoff, Michael Clark, Leigh Bowery, Alexander McQueen, John Maybury, Baillie Walsh, Cerith Win Evens. He is currently working on three photo books, as well as DJing and making sound scores, and presenting his archive internationally.

~ A Conversation with Margaret Pepper (serving soup & potluck dinner) ~ Margaret Pepper, a London-based artist, speaks about her home and home life, which has been intimately linked to her journey to the female sex and to her artwork. Following the discussion Latecomers, a documentary by director Olivia Humphreys, partly filmed in Margaret’s home, will be screened.

~ A Conversation About Gay Squats ~ with Jeffrey Hinton and Matt Cook (bring your lunch) ...QUEER SQUATS Jeffrey Hinton will be in conversation with Matt Cook, discussing his experience of living at 65 Warren Street, one of many squats in London during the early 1980s. The economic climate at the time helped bring a group of creative minds together in an unconventional domestic setting, sparking many creative collaborations and friendships. These relationships continue to influence London’s club land, style and popular culture today. Jeffrey Hinton will also show and discuss a previously unseen personal and intimate archive film

~ Homo Entertaining ~ with Pablo Leon de la Barra & David Waddington home entertaining, discussion, demonstration, margarita fountain, guacamole, with Pablo Leon de la Barra, David Waddington, Christopher Miller, Rocky Casale, Angelo Plessas with Pegy Zali, and DJ Gwendoline Christie

~ I'm With You ~ all day events co-curated by Christa Holka, Justin Hunt, and Johanna Linsley with: Season Butler, Becky Cremin, Dragersize!, Foodgasm: Sam Icklow & Liz Rosenfeld, Four Second Decay, Warren Garland, Alison Henry, Christa Holka, R. Justin Hunt, Eirini Kartsaki, ASM Kobayashi, Johanna Linsley, Brian Lobel, Jan Mertens, Owen Parry, Dan Paz, Hannes Ribarits, Sophie Robinson, Benjamin Sebastian, Jungmin Song, Helena Walsh, Lois Weaver, and Eleanor Webber.

~ In Every Dream Home, a Heartache ~ all day events co-curated by Paul Green of Avant Gardeners with participants Paul Green, Polly Brannan, Paul Elwick, Caroline Smith, Paul Harfleet, Seval Tahsin, White Rose, and Faerie Queery ~ The received images of housekeeping in contemporary Western society are generally based on mid-century concepts of domestic havens; a nuclear family with clearly defined gender roles and power structures. Any deviations from this norm were given short shrift in the post-war world of the mid-20th century, so where did the queer voice fit into this seemingly perfect construct and how have perceptions altered in recent times? During the day Avant Gardening will be looking at the tensions between the role of the gay person as 'the other' and the juxtapositions between the concepts of domestic bliss, the outsider and the concept of a queer home economics.

Drawing on the high camp imagery of both mid-century domestic bliss and even camper negative stereotypes of gay 'outsiders' from popular culture we will be creating a fanzine that explores the role of home economics in the popular imagination. As part of the creation of a fanzine we will be looking at alternatives to the traditional perceptions of domestic bliss, considering the pressures of conformity and the contemporary view of a gay household. We will also be considering the rituals of domesticity employed to keep the spectres of dirt and disorder from the home and will be joined by Mertle (performance artist, Caroline Smith) for her Butoh inspired cleansing rituals. As Mertle herself explains:

Now, you might have a question about cleaning an aspect of your gorgeous homes-and-garden. Perhaps your nautical theme has left your carpet dripping wet. Your pedigree partner puked up and stain busters refused to bust. Or you may – dirty blighters that some of you are- have a question about cleaning your actual selves. Who knows. All questions will be answered by Mertle. The best will win a Prize. At the very least you can scrub off that perma-stain. We will also be joined by Radical Faeries; White Rose and Faerie Query who will be on hand to talk about the international community of Radical Faeries.

Artist Paul Harfleet will be talking about his work and his interests in the implications of identity, citizenship and its influence on the navigation and memory of the urban environment. He augments and re-contextualises various sites and objects by allocating them with new meaning or significance often through drawing, photography and intervention, from his on-going Pansy Project which involves the artist planting pansies at the site of homophobic abuse to his current focus on masculinity, cultural homophobia and the iconography of punishment and execution.

Overseeing the day’s activities will be artist Paul Elwick and Avant-Gardeners Paul Green and Polly Brannan who will be facilitating the production of the fanzine - an old school, lo-fi, cut and paste publication to be created by the participants at the day. The Avant-Gardeners will also be offering wild flower seed prescriptions and hosting a potluck lunch - so bring your delicious delights to share with everyone! Throughout the day we will be intermittently relaxing to a specially compiled playlist of music that ricochets from the fuzzy sounds of vintage rock to sensual classics ripped from the soundtracks of the annals of exploitation sinema.

Film Screenings 6pm - end
Polyester subverts the dream of the ideal home by having Divine play the original desperate housewife, Francine Fishpaw, who is driven to alcoholism and suicide attempts when she discovers that her family do not live up to the American Dream.
50's/60's advertisements. How the dream was sold to the public.
Athletics Guild Movies (titles to be confirmed) With many gay people conforming to a perceived duty to live their life in a straight relationship they would often find homoerotic images which, with varying degree of believability, portrayed 'manly' pursuits as a cover for homoerotic content. Chief amongst these were the magazines + films of the Athletics Guild which featured semi-naked men enjoying each other’s company.

~ Crafternoon ~ with Alex Black ~ Bring your knitting, crochet, weaving, embroidery, macramé, bobbin lace, tatting, quilting, sewing, and some food to sustain you on your mission. Share skills and ideas and some nice moments together.

~ Queer Knit London ~Come along and join the Queer Knitters of London in an afternoon of knitting, crocheting, pom pom making, and stitchiness of all persuasions. Whether you're a beginner or a life-long knitter, bring whatever you're working on and join in for a friendly afternoon of crafting. This is also your chance to contribute to the knitted bunting for Pride, and spare yarn in any of the pride colours will be put to good use!

~ Faeries on the Roof (Gay Pride Sunday) with the Faeries of Albion ~ Encountering queer community, love and spirit. For one day only, join the Faeries of Albion for a post-Pride chill out afternoon at the Sundown Schoolhouse of Queer Home Economics. The temporary structure on the roof of the Hayward Gallery (South Bank, Waterloo) will host: discussions * discover heart circle * drumming * body painting * massage * chanting * tarot * puppy pile * tea and cake * 'make your wings' workshop * and more? Come as your queer faerie self, or come and discover...

~ Proud Pots ~ Lead by an anonymous graffitti artist. Become part of the work, and get touchy feely with hands on clay.



~ Fritz Haeg, Sundown Schoolhouse
~ Sam Ashby, Little Joe
~ Dr Ben Campkin, UCL Urban Laboratory
~ Brent Pilkey, PhD candidate UCL Bartlett School of Architecture
~ Alex Black
~ Hera Cook
~ Matt Cook
~ Sam Ashby, Little Joe
~ Pablo Leon de la Barra
~ Paul Green, Avant Gardeners
~ Jeffrey Hinton
~ Justin Hunt
~ Lisa Metherell
~ Margaret Pepper
~ Rachel Scicluna, The Open University
~ David Waddington

Co-curator/scholar in residence

Brent Pilkey, PhD candidate at the UCL Bartlett School of Architecture, will have a regular presence at the Schoolhouse through the month, co-curating events, leading conversations, conducting research, and continuing work on his thesis Queering Heteronormativity at Home.

A SURVEY will start with exhibiting images from Brent's own work, and visitors are then invited to email images of their own home to add to the collection. He is gathering data and conducting interviews aimed at illuminating and interrogating domesticity by asking queer visitors to think about their current home and their dream home. These are some of the questions that queer visitors might be asked:
~ How does your home affirm your queer sexual identity, or does it?
~ Do you think your current home or living situation challenges the idea of domesticity as place for the heterosexual nuclear family? Or does it support it?
~ Would you say that your home limits your freedom in any way?
~ Is home a concept that extends outside of your house? Do you feel at home in other places?
~ If you could change anything about your current home, what would it be?
~ What are some ways that your dream home might challenge the heteronormative nuclear family ideal of home? Or would your dream home be remarkably similar to a typical British home?

A CHARRETTE during the opening week will illuminate some ways that home design might be challenged, and opened up to include a range of sexualities. Architects and architectural students are invited to visit and think about the ways in which home can restrict and support queer subjectivities. This exercise explores the design of homes for queer people: What is a queer home? Would it look any different? Architectural historian Gülsüm Baydar is one of many academics that have begun to interrogate the normalised notion of home, she notes: “...the normative structure of domesticity has largely been the single-family household governed by heterosexual relationships with man as the head of the household and women as the caretaker. Once other figures of masculinity and femininity enter the scene, both the notion of a normative unified subject and the norm of domesticity are challenged, for these others are bound to cite the norm differently.” The outcome of the charrette (sketches/ plans) as well as the data and images collected could also be presented at a conference organized by Brent in December 2012 on sexuality at home.

A PUBLICATION drawing together a range of the best material from the four weeks of events/discussions on queer domesticity at the Schoolhouse will serve as a manual for queer homekeeping/of the queer home, modeled on a 19th cen. domestic / home-making manual. This document will be designed to introduce both queer domesticity and queer history into a form that could be sent to secondary schools.

THESIS: Queering Heteronormativity at Home
First, second and honorary supervisors: Dr. Barbara Penner & Dr. Ben Campkin & Dr. Andrew Gorman-Murray

This thesis draws from an interdisciplinary range of sources and sits at a cross roads of architectural history and queer theory. Whilst projects using similar frameworks have existed since the mid-1990s, this thesis both supports and complicates the existing literature. Rather than look to zones of exclusion, such as gay ghettos or sites used for cruising, I focus on the domestic built environment and the homemaking imaginaries of LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) Londoners. A study of these often overlooked everyday spaces, I argue, supports the larger queer theorised agenda of overturning heteronormativity. By showing that ‘queer space’ exists in the same everyday architectural typology that the majority of society inhabits, I seek to illustrate that the domestic environment is a highly contested space that cannot be normalised: it is both flexible and fluid, like the modern identities that inhabit it.

For a project that looks at contemporary everyday spaces where queer identity is regularly performed, ethnographic research methods have been key. The main research methodology for the thesis draws on a social science approach where 40 semi-structured interviews were conducted with LGBT Londoners in early 2011 between the ages of 21 to 78, from varying socio-economic backgrounds and diverse nationalities. Additional approaches include participant week-long diaries and photographs. Finally, a further 10 interviews were conducted with service professionals who work in the homes of LGBT Londoners.

Like many of the texts influenced from queer theory, this thesis works towards the goal of creating spaces where marginalised sexual minorities can live a life free from inequalities, such as physical and verbal homophobia and negative stereotypes. By exploring the queering of everyday space in contemporary London, and suggesting specific modes of everyday activism, this project will contribute to the growing body of scholarship on social justice that argues every person has equal right to make legitimate claims to both public and private space.



BUTT Magazine

Little Joe Magazine

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Cook, Matt (forthcoming). "Queer Domesticities.” In The Domestic Space Reader, edited by Chiara Briganti and Kathy Mezei. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. Forthcoming

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exerpts from Wikipedia:

Home economics (also known as family and consumer sciences or Home Ec.) is the profession and field of study that deals with the economics and management of the home and community. Home economics is a field of formal study including such topics as consumer education, institutional management, interior design, home furnishing, cleaning, handicrafts, sewing, clothing and textiles, commercial cooking, cooking, nutrition, food preservation, hygiene, child development, managing money, and family relationships. This teaches students how to properly run a family environment and make the world a better place for generations to come.

Sexual education and drug awareness might be also covered, along with topics such as fire prevention and safety procedures. It prepares students for homemaking or professional careers, or to assist in preparing to fulfill real-life responsibilities at home. It is taught in secondary schools, colleges and universities, vocational schools, and in adult education centers; students include women and men.

In the 19th century, home economics classes were intended to ready young women for their duties in the home. Classes were first offered in the United States, Canada and Great Britain, followed by Latin America, Asia, and Africa. International organizations such as those associated with the United Nations have been involved in starting home economics programs around the world.

Etymology: The preferred name of the field of study and profession is Home Economics. Internationally, the field of study has consistently retained the name Home Economics and is recognized both within and beyond the boundaries of the profession.
Content: Situated in the human sciences, home economics draws from a range of disciplines to achieve optimal and sustainable living for individuals, families, and communities. Historically, home economics has been in the context of the home and household, but this has extended in the 21st century to include the wider living environments as we better understand that the capacities, choices, and priorities of individuals and families impact at all levels, ranging from the household to the local and the global community. Home economists are concerned with promoting and protecting the well-being of individuals, families, and communities; they facilitate the development of attributes for lifelong learning for paid, unpaid, and voluntary work. Home economics professionals are advocates for individuals, families, and communities.

The content of home economics comes from the synthesis of multiple disciplines. This interdisciplinary knowledge is essential because the phenomena and challenges of everyday life are not typically one-dimensional. The content of home economics courses varies, but might include: food, nutrition, and health; personal finance; family resource management; textiles and clothing; shelter and housing; consumerism and consumer science; household management; design and technology; food science and hospitality; human development and family studies; education and community services, among others. The capacity to draw from such disciplinary diversity is a strength of the profession, allowing for the development of specific interpretations of the field, as relevant to the context.

Areas of practice: It is also called Human sciences based on everyday work where the setting is our house. Home economics can be clarified by four dimensions or areas of practice:- as an academic discipline to educate new scholars, to conduct research and to create new knowledge and ways of thinking for professionals and for society
- as an arena for everyday living in households, families and communities for developing human growth potential and human necessities or basic needs to be met
- as a curriculum area that facilitates students to discover and further develop their own resources and capabilities to be used in their personal life, by directing their professional decisions and actions or preparing them for life
- as a societal arena to influence and develop policy to advocate for individuals, families and communities to achieve empowerment and wellbeing, to utilize transformative practices, and to facilitate sustainable futures.

To be successful in these four dimensions of practice means that the profession is constantly evolving, and there will always be new ways of performing the profession. This is an important characteristic of the profession, linking with the 21st century requirement for all people to be "expert novices", that is, good at learning new things, given that society is constantly and rapidly changing with new and emergent issues and challenges. Human science is Human science.

Historical skills: In the past, household skills included: herbal medicine, converting hide into leather, soap making, spinning yarn and thread, weaving cloth and rugs, and patchwork quilting. More skills were cooking on a wood burning stove, churning butter, baking bread, and preserving food by drying and by glass-jar canning.

Cleaning: Home cleaning can be analyzed into four parts: litter removal, storage of belongings, dusting, and washing of surfaces. Laundry is a separate subject. Washing of surfaces is the most dangerous and complicated part because of the cleaning solutions. For example, hard water deposits are cleaned with acid solutions and dirt is cleaned with alkaline solutions; they both harm the skin and both weaken each other. Mixing chlorine bleach and ammonia together forms toxic gas. Solvents including paint thinner and rubbing alcohol are toxic and flammable. Disinfectants are poisonous. Even dish water requires rubber gloves.