Privacy is a state of mind

In as much as we need new notions of privacy to work on collectively, we need new notions and practical tools for building communities and solidarities. In his autobiographical story of his life with Gypsies Jan Yoors writes how hard it was for him to be outside in the open for weeks on end. At times he longs for a door and to be able to lock it. The Rom understand but for them privacy is a state of mind: “privacy was first of all a courtesy extended and a restraint from the desire the pry or interfere in other people’s lives. However, privacy must not be the result of indifference to others, but rather a mark of respect for them and of real compassion… Privacy in the first place was a state of mind; perhaps the clever Gaje erected walls to create secluded privacy. In the walls there were doors keyholes, the better to pry.”