Modernism to the 21st Century

Instructor(s)
Teaching Assistant(s)
Martha Trivett
Wendy Yuan

This course, Modern Architecture, would be better titled as “Modernisms” and conceptualized as a platform for exploring multiple perspectives and discourses on global architectural culture since 1850. In this course, we will analyze these fragmented, but often connected modernisms, through various media: architecture, material culture, films, dance, music, and literary texts. Tracing major events and new global alignments since the industrial revolution in Europe, our class discussions will centre on the social and political forces for change associated with global modernity. This theme-based course is organized so as to consider modern life through specific lenses, including the perseverance of craft, the spectre of hygiene and illness, affordable housing, and architecture by and for women. We will analyze the complex relationships between colonial powers in Europe and countries like Algeria, Morocco, Nigeria, Mexico, and India by considering how cultural information about housing, memory, and urban infrastructure is transferred and, sometimes, rejected in complex contexts. The role of political movements in Mexico, France, and America will take the focus of the latter part of the course. The course will finish with analysis and class discussion about the practice of architecture within increasingly globalized economies.