The Role of Place Identity in the Perception, Understanding, and Design of Built Environments

Indexed in: Book Citation Index, Social Sciences & Humanities, Scopus, EBSCO.

In an era of globalization, where the progressive deterioration of local values is a dominating characteristic, identity is seen as a fundamental need that encompasses all aspects of human life. One ...
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Place Identity and Religion: A Study of Hindu Immigrants in America

Pp. 133-145 (13)

Shampa Mazumdar and Sanjoy Mazumdar


How does religion influence place identity, especially for immigrants? This chapter examines how an immigrant group developed, sustained, and continued religious place identity in their new place of residence. Based on an ethnographic naturalistic field research project on Hindu immigrants in the USA four themes are detailed, including Memories of the sacred; Homes: the sacred and the individual; Temples: the sacred and the collective; and Nature: ecology and the sacred. The learnings from this study include the following: 1) religion can play an important role in the formation of place identity; 2) past places play significant and continuing role in religious and place identity; 3) religious place identity can be expressed and experienced at the individual, community, and ecological levels; 4) for immigrants, religious place identity is not static and rigid, but is fluid and adaptive, accommodating and including new places, and experiences; 5) religious place identity is actively created; and 6) identity involves unique characteristics, place features and ambiance, cultural views, actions, and rituals, among others.


Identity, place, and attachment, religious place identity, immigrant religious adaptation, sacred ecology.


Department of Sociology, University of California, Irvine, CA 92697-5100