Nostalgia-What makes it a social connection?


Landon Jones, Staff Writer

A feeling we all get in our lives eventually down the road happens at random moments with reminders that bring them back- Nostalgia. But what brings about this social connection? 

This word was coined or invented around 300 years ago and was designated homesickness then. Over the centuries the aspect of it has broadened to be more than just homesickness but instead just missing or longing aspects of a person’s past. The term was first proposed in 1688 by Johannes Hofer as an equivalent to the German word Heimweh which referred to a state of moral pain by forced separation of family or social environment. From a cultural history point of view, it could be considered a transient illness.

Another example or version of nostalgia is called nosological relay that has been associated with exile, forced displacement, and the psychosis of captivity. Due to many people having this feeling and being able to relate with one another, this makes it a social psychological phenomenon.  

So far, nostalgia sounds like it has a negative effect. While some of that is true, one can have nostalgia and not be affected by any negative outcome. It can have an positive effect on one even when in a negative situation like a funeral, after an argument, or anything that could hurt oneself. It can bring positive emotion to remember the good times you had in the past with a loved one or even a stranger, but overall, it’s an mixed emotion due to the varieties of feelings one can have after experiencing it.

How does one get the feeling of nostalgia? Maria Ruiz said that “Certain smells like play dough or flavors of chap stick remind me of my childhood.” Another SHS student Rae said, “I grew up liking horses and trying to be more around them. Now I ride them and I’m around them most of the time. Rodeo gives me the adrenaline rush that I like and you never stop learning,” and SHS student Sady Schafstall answered, “I think certain smells bring back those memories.” Rene Renteria replied, “Recently, certain feelings would make me feel nostalgic like the weather outside or how cool it would be. Mainly of my childhood. I remember one time I was outside during the summer. It was hot, but I remember the wind was blowing and it reminded me about my old house where I would always play in the front yard.”

People come from different backgrounds and have different views on the way life should be, but we all have been through pain and sorrow but people also have been through great moments in their lives. People understand that others have gone through the same type of pain and the same type of joyous feelings. So, the reason why it’s a social connection is because all can understand each other’s feelings if they let themselves.


Nostalgia: a conceptual history