Thursday, April 15, 2010


This article is particularly relevant to a thesis on possessions and collections. The article uses research to determine how society shapes our behaviour with possessions and how this reflects human nature. A cross-cultural, developmental, interview study is described that resulted in the identification of 27 dimensions of possession, 21 different reasons for ownership, and 41 categories of possessions. There are 2 major themes that emerge from the study: One was a sense of personal competence or control; the other was an association between possessions and the sense of self. Also, further studies with 2–5 yr old children that social environments determine how possession related behaviour emerges as children grow older.

Furby, L. "Understanding the psychology of possession and ownership: A personal memoir and an appraisal of our progress." Journal of Social Behavior and Personality 6 (1991): 457– 63.

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