Homemaking as a Social Art
A Book Review by Nancy Parsons
Homemaking as a Social Art: Creating a Home for Body, Soul and Spirit
Veronika van Duin
I longed for a book like this when I was a young mother and wife. I felt so alone in my desire to create a home in which my entire family could thrive. I also felt rather lost and uncertain in the face of the enormous responsibility that entails – I often simply did not know how to go about things, what to do. Such a book, of course, didn’t exist 20 years ago – fortunately for all, it does exist now.
Veronika van Duin was trained as a nurse and lived for many years in a community with people with special needs, her own family and, later, teenage boarders. She and her husband currently live with young children with special needs. Her own children are now grown. Needless to say, she has had ample experience in making a home for diverse personalities with extremely different needs. She shares her experience and insights in Homemaking as a Social Art.
Her perspective is that the task of homemaking is at the center of our social existence – a role that creates the heart of society and is nothing less than an art. She never claims that there is a blueprint for creating the perfect home, but rather offers principles and observations based on a study of what she calls the seven “life processes” and how they affect us. She addresses the significance of rhythm, relationships, artistic environment, caring, self-development, and much more besides.
This is a welcome and supportive work – one which I believe will be embraced with gratitude by those who read it. Highly recommended.
Veronika van Duin is also the author of A Rainbow over the River – Experiences of life, death and other worlds.
Nancy Parsons and her husband Bob Lathe have been involved with Waldorf education for over 30 years. Together they own Waldorf Books where they have an online section devoted to Waldorf Curriculum materials, with descriptions and reviews of the broadest offering of Waldorf curriculum material available anywhere. Nancy and Bob offer a treasure trove of information on Waldorf education and love to answer questions. Bob and Nancy provide resources, articles and information for parents and teachers on Waldorf education, Anthroposophy, Rudolf Steiner’s lectures and more at Bob and Nancy’s website, provide Waldorfemployment listings at Waldorf World and have translated about half of Rudolf Steiner’s pedagogical work currently in print in English. Nancy co-manages the oldest active e list on Waldorf education.