all modules

American architecture prior to the arrival of Europeans receives scant attention in survey courses of the Americas. To remedy this, this course considers the history of architecture and urban planning in the Americas before the European arrival. It is developed as a half semester supplement limited to 15 lectures. The intention is that GAHTC members can utilize the entire half semester program to develop a balanced course on the architectural traditions of architecture in ... continue reading

Lecture 1. First Societies

This lecture introduces what I call the “Social Package” that travelled from Africa from around 60,000 BCE throughout the entire globe. Traditionally, the emphasis has been on tools and weapons; here I want to emphasize the integration of tools with art making, hut making, and dance. The tendency in the scholarship has been to see these things as separate and to focus on ‘firsts.’ The point I want to make in this lecture is to focus on the time when the various elements of...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 2. From the Gravettians to the Plains Indians: The Great Northern Hunting Tradition

In the last lecture, I introduced the idea of the “Social Package” that made us modern humans, from 150,000 or 200,000 BC through today. There is a lot more than can be said, but the lecture was intended to give the rudiments of a more elaborate discussion. This lecture moves the clock forward to the period called the Last Ice Age (ca. 24,000 BCE – 10,000 BCE). Though the world was uniformly colder than before, it was coldest in Europe, Russia, Siberia and Canada, which...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 3. The Shamanistic Traditions: Part and Present

Shamanism is a generic term that describes a broad set of ritual beliefs about the human relationship to other humans and nature. It is linked also to Animism. This lecture introduces the broad parameters of shamanism while also trying to get students to realize that shamanism is not a ‘dead religion.’ In the last few decades, it has even been revived – just think of the so-called neo-pagans who flock to Stonehenge! So what we see today in some parts of the world is a mix...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 4. The Shamanistic Survivals and Revivals

The Lecture is about the modern world. Shamanistic world views are not dead, but alive and well especially in Asia, but also Africa. To understand this, one has to take off the monotheistic blinders. Animism was incorporated into the core principles of Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism and is most present in Shintoism. We start therefore with the THE BI-CAMERAL THESIS, as coined by by Julian Jaynes. The idea is to get students to see an alternative way of describing the world. ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 5. The Holocene and the Pit House Tradition

It is often argued that the Holocene set the stage for agriculture. This lecture starts from this premise, and demonstrates that the Holocene also set the stage for an expansion of First Society cultures. By 3,000 BCE, around the time we see the first cities in Mesopotamia, we see extensive First Society cultures developing in areas of particularly rich and diverse flora and fauna.   The most notable of these was the emergence of fish-based and ocean-shore societies tha...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 6. Ceremonial Centers: The Mound and Plaza Culture of the Mississippi River, La Galgada, Supe Valley, and World of Cotton

This lecture studies the emergence of the mound and plaza cultures beginning around 3,000 BCE in the lower Mississippi River area. It discusses Poverty Point and brings the student up to the Hopewell Culture in Ohio, a culture that thrived almost exclusively on the ceremonial exchanges. We then focus on northern Peru. First will be the site of la Galgada, an early ceremonial center where irrigation systems were first developed in this area. We then move to the cultures of ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 7. Ceremonial Centers

This lecture discusses the development of large ceremonial complexes in which the buildings play an active role as part of the ceremony. Some parts of these ceremonies involved large numbers of people and took place in outdoor spaces. Others were meant to be experienced individually in introspective ways, in underground, labyrinthine passageways. Scale, sound, and varying degrees of light and darkness contributed to enhance these experiences and punctuate them with culmina...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 8. Corn Story

This lecture tracks a long history of the rise of corn in the development of the Americas. We discuss the genetic development of teosinte into corn and its impact in the architecture and culture of Mesoamerica and North America. We follow the repercussions of corn centrism in the rise of the Olmecs and their colonization of the marshes in San Lorenzo and La Venta. We then skip forward to 200 CE to see the fulfillment of this food’s promise in the architecture of the Ma...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 9. Coastal Worlds of the Atlantic, from the Caribbean to Greenland

During this lecture we will be looking at areas that are quite frequently left out of the narrative on architecture in the Americas. We will be looking at a series of Coastal sites along the Atlantic coast from the Caribbean to Canada and into Greenland. And we will look at each other these places through time as well. So we will be travelling temporally and geographically throughout this class.

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 10. Southwest Civilizational Nexus: Mogollon, Hohokam, Anasazi

This lecture and the next will look at the developments in the present southwestern United States and northern Mexico prior to c.1100CE. This includes the Mogollon, the Hohokam, and the Anasazi. This lecture in particular will look at the Mogollon development of the kiva, space geared ceremonially around corn; Hohokam sites at Snaketown, where a large irrigation system was developed to support agriculture; Anasazi villages on Black Mesa; the interstitial site of Chaco Cany...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 11. Cahokia and the Mississippi Mound Cultures

Mounds were by the far the most numerous architectural imposition in the landscape designed and constructed by the native populations in the present United States. These mounds developed in a number of ways, which this lecture makes evident. But in every case, they became ceremonial and ritual spaces important in the structuring the societies that built them. This lecture discusses the large cultures of the U.S. Southeast, starting with an extended discussion on the Cahoki...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 12. Nazca, Tiwanaku, Chimu

This lecture discusses three interrelated, pre-Inca societies: the the Nazca, the Tiwanaku, and the Chimú on western coasts of Peru, Bolivia, and northern Chile. It will discuss the geoglyphs and underground aqueducts of the Nazca, the cosmographic city of Tiwanaku, and The Chimor Empire’s capital city Chan-Chan, an administrative capital that at its peak held an estimated 40-60,000 people.

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 13. Clan-based Societies: Shuar, Yanaomami, Tairona

This lecture expands on the often­forgotten existing cultures of the Amazon basin, including the Shuar in Ecuador, the Yanomami in Brazil, and the Tairona in Colombia. It looks at their culture and their architecture such as the Shuar Huts, the unique shabono of the Yanomami, and the network village of Teyuna in Colombia. The sophisticated networks and tectonic structures of these villages has been dismissed because of its fragile status in comparison to the stone structur...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 14. Tahuantinsuyo: The Inka Empire

This lecture discusses the interrelation of material and beliefs in the architecture and culture of the Inka Empire, which we should properly call by its name, the Tahuantinsuyo. We will start first with their coastal neighbors, the Chimu, and their adobe city of Chan Chán. The tall walls of Chan Chán were intricately carved and remind us the presence of multiple cultures throughout the western coast of South America. They were eventually subsumed by the Inkas, whose ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 15. Mexica

This lecture examines two cities, both capitals of empires in Central Mexico: the monumental city of Tula, capital of the Toltec, and the floating city of Tenochtitlan, capital of the Mexica. With the Toltec and Mexica we arrive to hierarchical societies in which monumental core buildings speak to the power of the rulers and elites. In Tenochtitlán, the ceremonial center is set apart from the common folk as they literally float around in artificial islands called chinampas...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 16. American Continuum

This lecture looks at the continuing presence of the culture, buildings, and peoples of the Americas within the continent from the moment of conquest, throughout the repeated attempts at erasure, and in the present. We start with the moment of encounter and conquest, with the arrival of the Spanish to Tenochtitlán and examine the ruins of the city lying beneath contemporary Mexico City. We then go to Cusco and to the multiple layers within the Coricancha or temple of th...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture Organization: First, we will examine the general concepts and principles of “the spirit of place” and “critical regionalism” Next, we will look at a few representative examples of architecture from different parts of the world through the lenses of “the spirit of place” and “critical regionalism.” We will then turn our attention to examples of modern architecture in Greece and Turkey. We will compare the work of architects Sedad Eldem (from Turkey) an... continue reading

Lecture Slides

First, we will examine the general concepts and principles of “the spirit of place” and “critical regionalism” Next, we will look at a few representative examples of architecture from different parts of the world through the lenses of “the spirit of place” and “critical regionalism.” We will then turn our attention to examples of modern architecture in Greece and Turkey. We will compare the work of architects Sedad Eldem (from Turkey) and Dimitris Pikionis (from Greece) Fi...

supporting documments: • Quiz with Answers • Handout • Lecture Notes

Each lecture focuses on the overarching theme of how global modernity was made through specific moments of intercultural “encounter” (including war and colonization). ‘Local’ cultural production, aesthetics, and art making traditions should always be linked to larger geopolitical transformations. Key will be to explain how societies transformed each other in the context of the rise of capitalist globalization and how this “encounter” catalyzed a new way of being in the wor... continue reading

Lecture 1. Indian Textiles and Global Patterns of Consumption, 1000-1800

This module explores the transformation of Asian trade networks and societies following the Mongol conquests in the 13th century. We focus on the circulation of architectural and artistic forms along the ancient Silk Route and the spread of Buddhism in Southeast Asia and the Himalayas. We explore the cultural connections of Ming China, its tension between dynastic authority and the increasingly powerful merchant class; the rise of the Ottoman, Timurid, Safavid, and Mughal ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Keywords • Lecture Notes • Readings

Lecture 2. Coffee: Its Origins, and Global Dispersal

This lecture, along with the two other lectures that it is associated with, uses certain eastern commodities (coffee, porcelain, and Indian textiles) to conceptualize spatial and geographic relationships in ways that offer an alternative to the pervasive state-centered narratives which fix territory in more static and landbound ways. Yet, this is the only one of the three that looks at a comestible product, the other two examine manufactured wares, and are thus much more f...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Keywords

Lecture 3. Blue and White Porcelain in the East and the West, 16-18th

In this lecture, we will look at what made Chinese porcelain, and particularly blue and whites, so desirable during this time. We will then consider the various ways that we can understand Chinese porcelain historically, as it circulated around the globe, enticing audiences wherever it went. As you will see, Chinese porcelain was coveted from Amsterdam to Istanbul to Mexico City, so its impact was extraordinarily far reaching. Moreover, it inspired many imitations. Thus, C...

supporting documments: • Handout • Keywords • Lecture Notes

Lecture 4. Global Encounters in the Taj Mahal

This lesson introduces students to one of the most iconic monuments in the world: the Taj Mahal. It emphasizes the theme of cross-cultural encounter throughout. The lecture begins by laying out historical coordinates, with slide and lecture points on the Mughal empire (1526-1858), the patron Emperor Shah Jahan (r. 1627-58), his wife Mumtaz Mahal (d. 1631) (the interred), and the architect Ustad Ahmad Lahori (d.1649). It then introduces students to the urban context of Mugh...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 5. Making Mexico City: A Colonial Capital in the Early Modern World

This lecture focuses on two cities, Tenochtitlan, the capital of the Mexica Empire, and Mexico City, the capital of New Spain. Because Mexico City was built upon and drew sustenance from the Mexica capital, the lecture addresses both urban space and colonial projects in early modernity. At issue are two questions: (1) how were urban capitals in the Americas organized as physical spaces, both before and after colonization; and (2) how does colonization shape what we can kno...

supporting documments: • Keywords • Lecture Notes

Lecture 6. Colonial Conversions: Mission Architecture in North America

Architectural histories of colonial North America tend to highlight the architecture of European settlers and trans-Atlantic connections: saltbox houses in New England, grand estates such as Monticello in Virginia, plantations in Louisiana. This unit, by way of contrast, turns to the western United States in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. The Mission of San Francisco de Asis (Mission Dolores) in San Francisco, California forms the focus of this unit, which con...

supporting documments: • Keywords • Lecture Notes

Lecture 7. Empire Elsewhere: Modern Architecture and the Politics of Globalization

This lecture focuses on the House of Wonders, a grand palatial and administrative center standing on the waterfront of Zanzibar City, which now is part of the nation state of Tanzania and once acted as an important Swahili coast center of maritime trade and exchange for centuries. In many ways the patron and builders of the House of Wonders drew on ancient local and Indian Ocean architectural precedents, but they also fused them with forms from the North Atlantic world, es...

supporting documments: • Keywords • Lecture Notes

Lecture 8. The Global Age of Mass Housing

This lecture explores the global history of mass housing in the twentieth century. From war-damaged Europe to suburban California and from apartheid Johannesburg to high-rise Singapore, the lecture surveys the major types of housing that have accommodated the world’s unprecedented population growth and in doing so, have shaped the vast expansion of our urbanized world. It focuses not only on the ideas of architects and planners and the schemes of developers, but also the c...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Keywords

This lecture provides an overview of Armenian Church architecture. It sets the architectural tradition within the landscape and history of the Armenian plateau. Armenian churches flourished in the medieval period and developed a distinctive construction method, floor plan, and decorative style. Each example is considered in the context of regional and global architectural currents, including Byzantine and Iranian. The lecture also considers the legacy of medieval Armenian ... continue reading

Lecture Slides

This lecture provides an overview of Armenian Church architecture. It sets the architectural tradition within the landscape and history of the Armenian plateau. Armenian churches flourished in the medieval period and developed a distinctive construction method, floor plan, and decorative style. Each example is considered in the context of regional and global architectural currents, including Byzantine and Iranian. The lecture also considers the legacy of medieval Armenian ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Among the wide range of materials that humans consume, substances such as coffee, tea, chocolate, and tobacco seem to form a separate category: humans take these so-called stimulants or psychoactive substances less for their nutritional benefits than for their capabilities in altering their moods or the status of their minds. The fact that materials containing similar chemical compounds were used in different regions of the world underscores their inherent physiological ap... continue reading

Lecture 1. Stimulants, Intoxicants, and Spices: A Preview

Lecture 1 provides an overview of the structure of the module and an introduction to its main themes and concepts. The lecture will then offer a broad overview of the precursors of coffeehouses and teahouses in the pre-1500 world. This introductory part aims to set the module in a longer trajectory of human existence on the globe. The lecture will then focus on the history of wine and beer and their socio-spatial dimensions in the ancient world. This would provide a backgr...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes

Lecture 2. Coffee and Coffeehouses, 1500-1750

In the previous lecture, we looked at the emergence of coffee as a novel social drink in the eastern Mediterranean in the 16th century. This lecture deals with the architecture of coffeehouses, from the mid-sixteenth-century to mid-eighteenth-century. In each context, we start with a broad description of the introduction of coffee and the coffeehouse and the circumstances of their transfer, along with a detailed analysis of one or two representative examples. The lecture e...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 3. Colonial Commodities: Chocolate and Tobacco

Lecture 3 first offers an overview of the ways in which the emerging trade networks affected the dissemination and popularization of new substances. Using maps and diagrams, we will explain how a new web of maritime trade dominated by European powers was formed. The various trajectories of coffee, chocolate, and tobacco distribution across the globe will serve as illustrations of the workings of this newly formed colonial system.

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 4. Tea and Teahouses

This lecture offers a global architectural history of teahouses. Starting with Chinese tea culture, the lecture will specifically focus on the development of the Japanese tea ceremony and its architectural setting. The lecture will then consider the teahouse in the global context from the seventeenth century onward. We will specifically focus on the emergence of the British tearooms and tea gardens, which will be explained in the context of the hegemonic colonial presence ...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 5. The Coffeehouse, 1800-1950

Lecture 5 begins with a brief review of colonial production and trade of coffee in the mid-18th century. We will first focus on the emergence of coffeehouses as self-contained structures—first in private gardens, and then in public ones— in the late 18th century/early 19th centuries. The second part examines urban coffeehouses in the same period. We examine how coffeehouses became sites of urban leisure for European bourgeoisie during the first half of the 19th century. Th...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes

This lecture course unpacks spaces of contestation and encourages students to think critically about how specific sites and objects have participated in the construction of class, race, and gender. Building on the histories of art and architecture, the course proposes the category of “space” as an alternative to the geographic, aesthetic, and analytic categories that have shaped the canons of these two disciplines. The lectures address those historically excluded from thes... continue reading

Lecture 1. Closet

Our week on “the closet” traces a long history of the architecture of privacy and asks how the “closet” came to signify a space of familial secrets and forbidden sexualities. We are looking at the “closet” both as an architectural site that raises boundaries and marks rites of passage, as well as a metaphor that structures sexualities around visibility and obscurity. We open the concept of the closet to a transcultural understanding, comparing and contrasting the various w...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 2. Closet Part 2

This lecture will take us to England and the United States, and then to Tehran, Iran. We will explore how the domestic architecture of privacy developed in England alongside shifting cultural notions and practices of individuality, privacy, and the self.

supporting documments: • Handout • Document • Lecture Notes

Lecture 3. Kitchen

This lecture introduces the kitchen as a space of both communal exchange and arduous labor, from the spaces of food preparation in the Americas at the time of the European arrival to the start of the 20th century. The lecture presents the kitchen as a domestic, private space that contains multiple transnational narratives of trade, from raw materials to the migrating populations it employs in the modern era, minorities and women. A broader narrative arch traces the struggl...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 4. Kitchen Part 2

This lecture continues the theme of labor in the kitchen into the second half of the 20th century. The lecture will examine the tension between public and private, communal and individual spaces in the preparation and consumption of food. The notion of the communal kitchen puts pressure on the increasingly private and isolated workspace created by the conditions of industrial capitalism. Particularly in the west, these conditions create a physical separation of household s...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

The first lecture explores how earth has been conceptualized and
integrated into African thought and architectural practice as material, metaphor, environment, and intervention over time. Some of the first known man-made environments on the African continent were carved out of rock features in the landscape, and from this point of origin, cultures across the continent would proceed to develop a variety of distinctive architectural traditions and material practices that wer... continue reading

Lecture 1. Meanings, Messages, and Materials in African Earthen Architecture

This lecture explores how earth has been conceptualized and
integrated into African thought and architectural practice as material, metaphor, environment, and intervention over time. Some of the first known man-made environments on the African continent were carved out of rock features in the landscape, and from this point of origin, cultures across the continent would proceed to develop a variety of distinctive architectural traditions and material practices that were reg...

supporting documments: • Keywords • Lecture Notes • Quiz • Quiz Answers • Bibliography • Lecture Abstract

Lecture 2. Case Studies in Earth and Sustainable Architecture in Contemporary Africa

Picking up where the previous lecture left off, this lecture explores the ways in which earth and architectural practice has evolved in the contemporary period in the context of increased concern around issues of pollution, unsustainable development, and the widespread depletion of natural resources in Africa. Architects are increasingly turning to so-called vernacular materials like earth and experimented with different methods of construction technology in an effort to e...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Quiz Answers • Quiz • Keywords • Bibliography

This course focuses on the architectural traditions and conventions of East Asia, especially those of China, Korea, and Japan, and highlights the cross-cultural aspects of their great cities and monuments. The aim is to reveal that what has often been considered “traditional” in Asia was actually a constantly evolving process driven by dynamic cultural exchanges among different cultures and civilizations of its extensive regions. “Globalization” is not an invention of the ... continue reading

Lecture 1. Context and Civilization

East Asia is a relatively clear idea defined by geography, culture, political constitution, and history. For more than two millennia, the high culture of the region was part of the Chinese cultural sphere, most centrally defined by the influence of Chinese script, Classical Chinese, and the wide range of cultural practices that it entails. At the same time, East Asia contains a vast diversity of political entities, ethnic communities, and language groups. China is presentl...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 2. Archaeology and the Settlements from the Neolithic to Bronze Age

We know very little about Neolithic and Bronze Age architecture in East Asia. Many regions were not under centralized governance yet during this period, thus the lack of permanent monumental construction. Housing, often built with temporary material, and often succumbed to the lapse of time and easily vanished in repeated redevelopments during the following eras. The life and history of this remote past survived only fragmentally in legends and artifacts. In recent years, ...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 3. Fengshui and Mortuary Architecture

Fengshui (pungsu in Korean, literally “wind and water”) is a theory in East Asia to identify the best locations in nature for a city or a building. In China and Korea, with the belief that the fengshui of the ancestral tomb or living residence influences the fortune of the descendants and the prosperity of the family, consulting a fengshui master is important for the construction of both residential and funerary architecture. Confucianism highlights family values and ven...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 4. Classical City Planning

The practices of laying out cities with regard to the geomantic principles of fengshui, enclosing and subdividing urban space within an orthogonal grid of walls and thoroughfares, and creating a hierarchy of space based upon functional and status considerations makes up one of China’s most significant contributions to the global history of urbanism. The rational, gridded order of the Chinese city served as metaphor and reinforcement for compelling ideologies of centralize...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 5. Buddhism Across Borders: Tang, Silla, Nara and Heian Buddhist Architecture

The extraordinary legacy of art and architecture associated with the teachings of Buddhism constitute one of the most enduring elements of cultural connection among diverse cultures in Asia. Originating in South Asia, these teachings found multifarious and complex pathways over both land and sea to find followers in cultures as distinct in their values as they separated by geographical distance. The history of East Asian Buddhist architecture, and Buddhist belief and pra...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 6. Ramification in Buddhist Architecture and Hybridity

The extraordinary legacy of art and architecture associated with the teachings of Buddhism constitute one of the most enduring elements of cultural connection among diverse cultures in Asia. Originating in South Asia, these teachings found multifarious and complex pathways over both land and sea to find followers in cultures as distinct in their values as they separated by geographical distance. The history of East Asian Buddhist architecture, and Buddhist belief and pra...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 7. Late Buddhism and the Localization of Religious Architecture

Buddhist architecture since the 14th century became more and more integrated into local cultures, creating colorful mixtures in philosophy, ritual practice, as well as architectural space, form, and decoration. Major dynasties and cultural periods in East Asia since the 14th century Maritime route connection, replacing the land route Silk Road, became the main venue for cultural exchanges. Influences from mainland East Asia on Japan and the Korea Peninsula were mainly ...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 8. Ritualistic Dwelling of Power

This lecture focuses on the palatial residences, together with the surrounding monumental ritualistic structures that legitimatize their claims to rule, highlighting the period between 1400 and 1800 but also tracing its ideological origins to earlier monuments. Centered on the major capital cities of the Ming and Ching dynasties in the continent, the Joseon Dynasty in the Korean peninsula, and the castle complexes of the late Muromachi and Momoyama period in Japan, the cit...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 9. Gardens and Literati Landscape

Literati culture boomed in East Asia since the 10th century. The greatest architectural expression of the literati culture is the private garden, where all intellectual and artistic activities associated with the literati taste took place, such as poetry, calligraphy, painting, qin zither playing, weiqi (go in Japanese) chess, refined theater, and antiquarian connoisseurship.

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 10. Vernacular Architecture

Though traditional histories of East Asian architecture inevitably focus upon the gridded cities, extraordinary structural, decorative and iconographic complexity of religious architecture, and the scale and technical sophistication of the centers of elite power, the built environment of ordinary people in all cultures is one of the most diverse and rich in world architectural history. This is so partly for simple reasons of scale – East Asia for most of world history has...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 11. Colonialism and Westernization

The nineteenth and early twentieth century saw a fundamental shift in the power structure of the world and of the East Asian region. Marked by the loss of the Opium wars, the Qing Dynasty went into radical decline. At the same time, Japan ascended as a world power by quickly absorbing and adapting to Western technology. With this fundamental shift in the power structure of the region, East Asia enters a fascinating, tragic historical period of imperialism and colonialism, ...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 12. Modern to Contemporary: 1945-Present

The unconditional surrender of Japan and the end of World-War II marked the beginning of a new world order that has directly shaped the environment that we now live in. The ensuing decades of the Cold War saw the rise of communist China, the division of the Korean peninsula into north and south, the disarmament and democratization of Japan and its re-emergence as an economic powerhouse. Even though the conditions of architectural production among the newly-born nation stat...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

The general aim of this module is to help frame the beginning of a survey of architectural history. Lectures are designed to be a little over an hour long, but can be lengthened or shortened or combined as required. The material covers some basic aspects of First Society cultures (Lectures 1-4) and the transition to agriculture, pastoralism and city building (Lectures 6-10).

Lecture 1. Architecture Beginnings: A Global Perspective

This lecture introduces what I call the “Social Package” that travelled from Africa from around 60,000 BCE throughout the entire globe. Traditionally, the emphasis has been on tools and weapons; here I want to emphasize the integration of tools with art making, hut making, and dance. The tendency in the scholarship has been to see these things as separate and to focus on ‘firsts.’ The point I want to make in this lecture is to focus on the time when the various elements of...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 2. The Gravettians and the Northern Hunting Tradition

In the last lecture, I introduced the idea of the “Social Package” that made us modern humans, from 150,000 or 200,000 BC through today. There is a lot more than can be said, but the lecture was intended to give the rudiments of a more elaborate discussion. This lecture moves the clock forward to the period called the Last Ice Age (ca. 24,000 BCE – 10,000 BCE). Though the world was uniformly colder than before, it was coldest in Europe, Russia, Siberia and Canada, which...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 3. The Shamanistic Traditions: Past and Present

Shamanism is a generic term that describes a broad set of ritual beliefs about the human relationship to other humans and nature. It is linked also to Animism. This lecture introduces the broad parameters of shamanism while also trying to get students to realize that shamanism is not a ‘dead religion.’ In the last few decades, it has even been revived – just think of the so-called neo-pagans who flock to Stonehenge! So what we see today in some parts of the world is a mix...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 4. The Magdalenian Culture and the Cave Art Tradition

Rock Art accompanied all First Society cultures the world over. Its meaning and purpose can only be known through conjecture. This lecture introduces some examples and introduces the idea of Sacred Landscape. The lecture moves to what are certainly the most spectacular examples – the caves in southern France and northern Spain, made by the Magdalenian Culture. The history of these caves is not known definitively, but they were probably begun by the Gravettians. As the c...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 5. The Holocene and the Emerging Riverine/Shore and Mound Cultures

This lecture introduces the Holocene (around 10,000 BCE) and its consequences for the development of social forms. It is often argued that the Holocene set the stage for agriculture. This lecture starts from this premise, and demonstrates that the Holocene also set the stage for an expansion of First Society cultures. By 3,000 BCE, around the time we see the first cities in Mesopotamia, we see extensive First Society cultures developing in areas of particularly rich an...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 6. Pastoral Worlds

At the core of the lecture is a map that differentiates the forest- and shore-based societies of the north and the emerging monsoon-based societies around the equator. It is to the latter that the word ‘civilization’ is often linked. What tends to be forgotten in that narrative is the emergence of the pastoral tradition and its new relationship to animals. Pastoralism developed in Africa and West Asia and had a huge impact on the social structure in the area of Africa-E...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 7. The Agro-Pastoral Village World

This lecture is dedicated to agro-pastoralism, where agriculture and pastoral traditions blend into a single village-based worldview. Pastoralism and agro-pastoralism develop more or less at the same time, but in different eco-landscapes. The emergence of agro-pastoralism begins around 9,000 BCE and involves the concentration of energy around a single set of plants. Whereas First Society people used many plants in various ways, agriculturalists began to elevate one or two ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 8. European Megalithic Tradition

The first four centers of agriculture were Mesopotamia, Egypt, the Indus region, and China. These places expanded outward from a clear center. Different is the story of Europe, where the agro-pastoral revolution arrived after expanding westward and northward from Mesopotamia, starting 5,500 BCE and reaching Ireland around 4,000 BCE. There were two main tracks, one overland through Romania and Germany, and one along the coasts of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic. The latt...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 9. Model and Temple

At the same time as the expansion of the agro-pastoral tradition across Europe, we see in Malta the emergence of a unique culture built not around self-sustaining agriculture, but a religious economy. As difficult as it might seem to the modern mind to imagine, this site in Malta was one of the first great regional sites of the world – perhaps even more important than Stonehenge, with which it has parallels. People came from afar by boat to visit one of the temples, to ex...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Lecture Notes

Lecture 10. The Agricultural Revolution in China and SE Asia: Rice-centrism

This lecture covers the East Asian agricultural/horticultural worlds. I start with Hemudu, one of the first places where rice was grown agriculturally. The expansion of rice to the islands would come, however, remarkably late. First there was the Polynesian expansion, which did not involve rice, but a host of plants that were connected to solving the problems of food, clothing, building materials and the like. This ‘civilizational package’ was highly mobile and brought by...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 11. Mesopotamian Cities and the First Risk Economies

This is a long lecture that can easily be shortened or split into two. It covers the emergence of cities in the Tigris-Euphrates marshes. Unlike the conventional approach, which ‘naturalizes’ this phenomenon as part of the inevitable march of civilization, I want to make sure students realize that at that time, the first cities were highly speculative and filled with extreme risk. They had economies that had never been attempted before, namely single production economies (...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

This GAHTC module focuses on the global history of climate as a consideration in architectural ideas and practices. It is intended to operate either as a ‘stand-alone’ subject in relevant courses, or as part of a broader history of global architecture or of architecture and the environment. Through a series of six lectures, the module describes how climatic concerns have developed as an input to architectural design processes in many different global regions. The histo... continue reading

Lecture 1. Primitive Architecture and the Timeless Climatic Type

This lecture provides a launching point into some of the issues involved with tracing an architectural history through the lens of climate. The lecture is divided into two parts. The first addresses the shifting concept of the “primitive” within architectural culture, especially as it was evoked as a symbol for ideas of naturalness and climatic adaptation. The second and third parts, revolving around two case studies, add to this historiographic narrative by introducing th...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Readings

Lecture 2. Colonial Architecture and Climate in Africa and Asia

The records of non-western architecture prior to the 19th century are relatively scarce. This is because much of the continental land mass south of Europe’s Iberian region, and coastal North Africa remained unexplored territory to European explorers of the 16th and 17th century. Whilst in global history, from the 16th century, there is a marked increase in inter-continental trade, with new trading and communicating networks being established to support this, the built phys...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 3. Sanitation, Climate and Statecraft in Colonial Societies

This lecture is concerned with the development and exchange of ideas and principles that have informed the designs of towns, buildings and landscapes in former British colonial territories (late17thC – Mid 20C). We will be looking at what Georg Simmel called the ‘visible institutions of the state’ – that is, those buildings and projects that enabled the British Empire to exist - the very mechanisms for imperial advancement. We will be focusing primarily on four geographica...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 4. Modernism, Climate, and Post-colonial Development

The purpose of this lecture is to demonstrate links between architecture and climate that developed from the late 19th century to the mid-20th century. Part 1 begins by illustrating how attempts to treat and prevent tuberculosis, an urban disease, had a direct impact on the development of architectural typologies and forms. As the treatment of tuberculosis was closely linked to the environment and climate, architects around the world had to design buildings (in the main sa...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 5. Architecture, Climate, and Applied Science Around World War II

This lecture discusses the importance of climate to the development of architectural modernism in the period surrounding World War II. Starting off with some of the basic climatic principles championed by Le Corbusier in the late 1920s, the lecture then discusses developments in Brazil and the United States. A primary focus is on the chains of influence and counter-influence between these different regions, and many others as well, that led to the refinement of the use of ...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Readings

Lecture 6. Air Conditioning Takes Command

This is the final lecture of the series. In this lecture, we examine a new technology – air-conditioning – and discuss its sociotechnical and architectural histories, i.e. how it shaped and was shaped by both the society and the built environment. Although this series of lectures is organized in a loosely chronological manner and air-conditioning appears to be the latest instalment in the history of climate control, I argue that the architectural history of air-conditionin...

supporting documments: • Readings • Lecture Notes

Islamic art and architecture, like any other form of art that attempts to characterize the material production of a particular faith or variety of cultures over the longue durée, simply cannot be understood as an autonomous artistic development. Indeed, scholars of Islamic art and architecture, over the past decade or so in particular, have demonstrated that the field is characterized by a dialogic process of development rather than an autonomous or mimetic one that depend... continue reading

Lecture 1. Brick: A building and Writing Unit

This lecture begins with an examination of brick and its development and history before Islam. Next, brickmaking and the use of brick is charted through the Islamic culture. The lecture concludes with contemporary uses of brick and the evocative meaning of such use. The history of brick architecture is the history of civilization. With the spread of Islam new urban centers were created, and the technology of making bricks, fired and glazed bricks, transported where Isl...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 2. Out of the Earth: The Global Journeys of Ceramic Tile

One of the most ubiquitous and prolific decorative materials found throughout the history of Islamic art and architecture is the ceramic tile. Tiles in a variety of forms are found throughout the history of Islamic architecture including: those inherited from the Byzantines and Sassanians, the East Asian white porcelain tile, as well as luster tile and faience, to further developments such as overglazing and the discovery of fritware techniques and underglazing. While it i...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 3. Stone

The use of dressed stone in architecture signifies the knowledge of advanced stone working technology. The concept of shaping stones began with the invention of the first stone tools. Those stones were broken and sharpened using other stones through knapping. Stone that has been cut, shaped into a smoother planar form so that stones fit together are called dressed stone. The production of dressed stone requires knowledge about stone properties to determine, or invent, the ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 4. Liquid Stone: Stucco in Islamic Architecture

Stucco was first employed in Iran for the primary reason of a lack of building stone. It was used in this way to not only conceal the surface inconsistencies in brick, the dominant building material, but also as a transitional material between various wall surface media. Through decorative ornamentation and geometric patterning inconsistencies in the wall were covered. It soon became a dominant architectural feature firmly associated with the Abbasid caliphate. Howe...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 5. The Peripatetic Peregrinations of the Pointed Arch

It is well known that the pointed arch appears in buildings around the Mediterranean and Central Asia prior to even its adaption by Islam, much less its appearance at St. Denis, Paris in the 12th century. However, despite this, the origins of the pointed arch and the pointed ribbed vault and the paths they traveled across Eurasia before becoming an ‘Islamic’ or ‘Gothic’ architectural characteristic par excellence remain largely a mystery. The intent of this lecture is to o...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Document

This course presents a series of 6 introductory lectures describing the characteristics and global history of so-called ‘rock-cut’ architecture, or the subtractive architecture that is embedded within a native geological mass. Such structures are found worldwide, in history and even today. As residences, churches, shrines, meditation spaces, civic structures and tombs – rock-cut architecture occupies a central place in many global civilizations. It even persists into the ... continue reading

Introduction: The Idea of the Chthonic

This lecture will introduce the theoretical basis to ‘chthonic’ work, in contrast with tectonic. Shown as residences, churches, shrines, meditation spaces, civic structures and tombs, rock-cut architecture occupies a central place in many global civilizations - even persisting into the present day in forms such as subway systems, underground market spaces, and the occasional itinerant work of architecture. In ‘rock-cut’ architecture, the structure is deeply integrated wi...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 2. The Pharonic Chthonic of the Nile River Valley: Pyramids, Tombs, Monuments and Obelisks

This lecture provides an interpretation of the Pharoanic architecture of the Nile River valley through the lens of the chthonic. Beginning with the Old Kingdom, this lecture argues that the iconic forms – from the mastaba to the stepped pyramid, and eventually to the great pyramid complexes of Cheops - are proto-chthonic ‘mountains’ created over burial sites: Pyramids as shaped mountains, in conversation/ on cross axis with the flowing water of the Nile. During the middle...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 3. Persia/ Lycia’/ Petra: Chthonic Life, Chthonic Death

Concurrent developments in Mesopotamia display similar chthonic roots. Beginning with the ziggurat form as a ‘sacred mountain’ – a mass containing the source of all life, reaching towards the sky with labyrinth-like passages and openings. In Persia, this sensibility is evident in the Tomb of Cyrus outside of Pasargarde – an assembled stone mass that mimics the earlier ziggurats. Like the Egyptians, the Persians then transitioned to rock-cut tombs for Darius, Xerxes, a...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 4. South Asia and Lalibela: Religion, Trade and Significance

The Persian Empire had a massive influence over the rising Mauryas in India. After the conquest of Persepolis by Alexander, the craftsmen and thinkers of Persia migrated East to India – taking their expertise and aesthetic ideology with them. Stone pillars with animal capitals transitioned directly, while other forms had a more tangential influence. The rock-cut tombs and treasuries of West Asia, may have been the direct precedent for the first Buddhist and Jain caityas...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 5. The Americas: Pueblo, Aztec and Inca Chthonic

The main theme is the concept of the ‘chthonic-ecology’, where the body of the earth is understood as a living system - soil, earthquakes, snow, water, sun, air interdependencies - that can be characterized as ecology in the modern sense of the word. This is chthonic architecture not as the ‘rock-cut’, as in Afro-Eurasia, but the chthonic as a complete understanding of landscape and the environment: a chthonic ecology. The lecture begins with the chthonic forms of the Pue...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 6. The Modern: Chthonic Infusions in Modern Life

This lecture explores the unexpected appearance of rock-cut architecture in more modern context. As we have seen, the chthonic idea flourished as architecture in pre-modern times. With the onset of modernity, the longstanding separation of the native ground from the capital-A architecture became dominant, particularly with the ascent of the functionalist, materialist and tectonic contentions of architecture. As per the expectations of the European Enlightenment, the empowe...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

This course presents a series of 7 introductory lectures locating the pre-islamic architecture of sub-continental south Asia in its global context. The emphasis in this module is not on identifying the characteristics that supposedly make the architecture of South Asia distinctive ‘Indian’ or ‘Hindu’, but to understand a. what the characteristics and meanings of so-called Indian architecture are, and b. to locate these in terms of their local and global contexts. My g... continue reading

Lecture 1. The Meluhhan City States

This lecture addresses the question of the ‘beginnings’ of South Asian civilization. It locates the migrations out of Africa that ‘settled’ South Asia, and then traces the context of the art and architecture of the cave dwellers, with focus on Bhimbetka, a centrally located pre-historic site (this section can be presented in context with the GAHTC lecture module on the Architecture of the First Societies, by M. Jarzombek). The lecture then moves to the contexts of the esta...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 2. The Atmos of the Aryas

This lecture focuses on the Aryas, and in particularly their metaphysics as manifested in their architecture. The lecture begins with a discussion of the controversial Arya Migration Theory, and its racist sub-texts, and attempts to distinguish that from the globally situated understanding of the migratory influences on cultural development, in particular in South Asia. This leads to a discussion of the making of Arya cities in the Gangetic plain, and what connects and dis...

supporting documments: • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 3. The Buddhist Stupa and its Transformations

This lecture is the first of two parts that explore the forms of Buddhist architecture, their relationship to trade, and their proliferation in the Asian world. In this sequence, this lecture discusses the establishment of Buddhist architecture under Emperor Asoka in the 3rd century BCE, and its spread in South Asia and south East Asia. The main architectural object of discussion is the ‘stupa’. The lecture begins with the rise of the Mauryan Empire and its relationshi...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 4. The Nalandan Mahavihara

This lecture combines two topics – a. the institutional transmission of Buddhist thought from centers of intellectual production in India, and b. the role of the Caitya in the transmission of Buddhism into East Asia, along the trade routes. The lecture begins by establishing the mahavihara, the Buddhist ‘university’ that was a systematic site for the production and teaching of advanced Buddhist knowledges. From here the lecture moves to the study of the practical instit...

supporting documments: • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 5. The Guptas and the Invention of the Hindu Temple

This lecture is dedicated to the development of Hinduism in the Guptan period in South Asia. This development took place in the context of the ongoing spread of Buddhism throughout Asia, which has been covered in other lectures. Usually, the Guptans are held responsible for the ‘demise’ of Buddhism in India, its home of origin. By contrast this lecture will argue that the Guptas, who were generous patrons of the Buddhists in their realms, sought to revive Hinduism, in harm...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 6. Hindu Temple Design Development and Experimentation

This lecture explores the development of the temple concept in the South Asian world affected by the Guptan invention of the structural, in particular focus on the peninsular Indian kingdoms of the Pallavas and the Chalukyas. In the process of ‘adopting’ the Guptan institution of the Hindu temple, these kingdoms did not simply cut-and-paste the new orthodoxy, nor did they produce a regional adaptation, in the sense that they ‘localized’ principles that were abstract and cl...

supporting documments: • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 7. The Cholas and Angkor: The Idea of Divine Kingship

This lecture focuses the relationship between Hindu temples and administrative systems. It begins with a discussion of the polity and architecture of the Rajputs of northern India, the ‘new’ kings, converted from first-societies practices into ‘caste’ Hindus. We study the new manuals of temple building – the Vastu-Shastras – and some of their famous architectural creations. The Bay of Bengal/SE Asian geo-sphere around the year 1000CE. The Bay of Bengal and the Indian O...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 8. The Khmer Revolution

This is a discussion of the Khmer socio-economic matrix in terms of its innovation of Cholan kovil practices. It outlines the hydro engineering and the social systems that were integrated by the Khmer to create a uniquely powerful polity in SE Asia. The main case study is Vrah Vishnulok (Angkor Wat), which can be understood as a spatialization of Mouth Meru, here adapted to the local geographical conditions.

supporting documments: • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 9. Islam, South Asia Style: The Making of Fatehpur Sikri

This lecture addresses the so-called establishment of Islam in South Asia. While colonial texts usually identify the invasions of Mohammand Ghazni and Ghori around 1000CE as the beginning of Islam in India, this lecture contends that these are colonial projections, and that the actual story of Islam and south Asia goes back to the older ongoing trade between West Asia and South Asia. This lecture then examines the architecture of the Delhi Sultanates, a series of short liv...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 10. The Mughals Unbound

The concept of this lecture is to discuss the Mughal tomb. It focuses on the Taj Mahal and its precedents.

supporting documments: • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes • Handout

These five lectures revisit architectural histories (itihasas) of the Indian Subcontinent from multidisciplinary, cross-geographical, and interpretive perspectives, supported by a new body of scholarship and archaeological data. The word for “history” in Sanskrit is itihasa, which has traditionally meant “that’s what happened” or “so indeed it was.” Yet, iti (as in itihasa) is often used in a Sanskrit sense of “end quote.” Itihasa, therefore, in its traditional usage has o... continue reading

Lecture 1. Historiographic Challenges in South Asian Architectural History

These lectures revisit architectural histories (itihasas) of the Indian Subcontinent from multidisciplinary, cross-geographical, and interpretive perspectives, supported by a new body of scholarship and archaeological data. The word for “history” in Sanskrit is itihasa, which has traditionally meant “that’s what happened” or “so indeed it was.” Yet, iti (as in itihasa) is often used in a Sanskrit sense of “end quote.” Itihasa, therefore, in its traditional usage has often ...

supporting documments: • Document • Document • Lecture Notes

Lecture 2. Mughal Sphere of Influence: From Lahore to Bengal

This lecture examines Mughal architecture, one of the most vibrant and dynamic architectural eras in India. The Mughal dynasty was established in 1526 CE by Babur, descendant of the Timurid Mongols. A Muslim dynasty of Turkic-Mongol origin, the Mughals ruled most of northern India from the early 16th to the mid-18th century. During its imperial rule stretching over more than two centuries, the Mughal Empire created a spectacular body of mausoleums, mosques, palaces, and ga...

supporting documments: • Document • Document • Lecture Notes

Lecture 3: India-Europe Relationship Reconsidered

This lecture focuses on the early colonial era of the British Raj and explains how British artists in the 18th and 19th centuries imagined India in ways that were complicit with imperial domination and the creation of Britain’s image of India. After the East India Company’s victory over the Nawab of Bengal in the Battle of Plassey in 1757, British artists eager to “discover” the newly conquered territory in the East had begun arriving in India. Among them were such renowne...

supporting documments: • Quiz with Answers • Bibliography • Lecture Notes

Lecture 4: The Architecture of Empire

A “Global” History of South Asia (3000 BCE – 2000 CE) This lecture examines how the British Raj employed the language of architecture during its colonial rule of India to project an image of Britain as the leader of the “civilized” world and assert the authority of the empire. In many ways, the colonial administration viewed architecture as an integral part of its ideological approach of “civilizing mission.” However, a singular narrative of the architecture of empire did...

supporting documments: • Document • Document • Lecture Notes

Lecture 5. The Politics of Post-Partition Modernism and Nationalism

This lecture examines the how the newly minted nations of India and Pakistan negotiated the questions of national identity and modernism through the language of architecture. In the wake of the Indian Partition in 1947, these nations looked both outward and inward for inspiration, marked by an urge to construct an image of progress, modernity, and nationalism. But, as Salman Rushdie’s celebrated novel, Midnight’s Children (1981), reveals how the traumatic experience of bir...

supporting documments: • Document • Document • Lecture Notes

This course proposes to analyze the global turn as it relates to the industrial revolution and the regimes of circulation of goods and commodities, knowledge, experts, techniques, people, and labor that it introduced and supported. We contend that these regimes posed new challenges to the discourse and practices of modern architecture that yielded substantial innovations during the mid nineteenth century that changed and consolidated in the second half of the twentieth cen... continue reading

Lecture 1. Global Production and Consumption

We identify and discuss the contribution of world exhibitions and fairs to global production and consumption of good and commodities as it relates to the emergence of new spaces of display and commercial collectivity. Case studies range from the Crystal Palace at the Great Exhibition of London (1851) to the urban department stores of Europe (Innovation by Victor Horta in Brussels and Schocken by Erich Mendelsohn in Germany) and suburban shopping malls in the post world war...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 2. Global Discovery and Dissemination

We identify modes of knowledge creation and dissemination in different media over time. Whereas travel was the most important source of direct learning during the eighteenth and first half of the nineteenth century, the proliferation of printed matter and photography expanded the possibilities of learning from afar and was eventually even more radically transformed by the advent of the digital revolution. When travel was not possible, the plaster cast functioned as a surro...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 3. Global Collaborations

As education moved from in-situ learning to spaces of collectivity, so too did opportunities for architects and students of architects to converge into the transcultural classroom. If colonialism promoted exchanges between nations, it was not until nationalism asserted itself that institutions began to formalize education. Together with the increased media, this lead to the rise of greater networks of collaboration and the rise of the international competition.

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 4. Global Construction

Here, the question is: How can construction practices be regarded as global processes? We identify and analyze a series of producers of products alongside the emergence of new construction techniques and technologies. This lecture aims at illustrating the increasingly complex circulation of different materials and methods that go against the grain of the traditional vernacular ideal of sourcing local materials that has recently re-gained momentum within the ‘green’ and env...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 5. Global Transportation

Dramatically increased mobility throughout the last century has generated both increased dialogue and new types of buildings that have accommodated new forms of transport ranging from air and train to automobiles. This phenomenon has given way to a number of diverse types of buildings including the Motel, Hotel, Airport, and Train Stations.

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 6. Global Inequities

The building industry has increased relied upon labor moved across geographies that reveals the economic disparities between regions and cities of the global north and south. These exchanges reveal the paradoxes between the virtual and real insofar as the needs of actually building in specific places go counter to the global circulation of ideas and capital.

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Appreciation develops from understanding. The goal of this course is to introduce and foster an understanding of architecture as a central component of the built environment and of the ways in which architecture exemplifies cultural values. Architecture is all around us and part of our daily lives. It refers not only to buildings: architecture is human settlement, the physical settings made by humans for their traditions, rituals, living, working, and community-build... continue reading

Lecture 1. Introduction

This course serves as an introductory course to the history of ancient built environments. We will become familiar with the language of built environments including the vocabularies of architecture, landscape architecture, and urban design. We will also be introduced to ideas that have shaped the cultures we know today, from the Western Culture of Europe to that of China, India, and some of the many cultures of the African continent. This is a survey course and an introdu...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes

Lecture 2. Monumental Architecture in Stone

Today's monuments range geographically from Korea to France, England, Ireland and Egypt, and in date from the 5th to the 1st millennia BCE. What unifies them is their use of stone - used for a range of building types that speak to a human desire to provide enduring monuments on the landscape. While we may have monuments that have endured from very early dates, we don't always have full knowledge of why they were built or what purpose they served. Our earliest examples t...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 3. Early Monumental Architecture and its Siting

Lecture 3 continues an examination of materials and explores the broader context within individual monuments were sited, looking at the settlements that preceded the emergence of cities, which will be the topic of Lecture 4. With these we address several among the sites of the world's earliest civilizations, in Mesopotamia, Egypt, India, China and Mesoamerica.

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 4. Early Urban Settlements and City Building

While small villages comprised the earliest settlements, we can also identify the beginnings of early urban settlements if we define urban as a center of population, commerce, and culture - a town of significant size and importance. We can recognize these settlements as constituting a series of networks, from social networks and governmental systems to modes or systems of commerce, trade, and production. A city is the result of urbanization, which can be thought of as a p...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 5. Architecture and Ritual sites: India, China and Indonesia

This is the first of two lectures that focus on architecture and ritual, exploring the ritual spaces and architectural forms that developed along with enduring religious traditions of Hinduism and Buddhism. These religions both originated in the Indian subcontinent and were later exported along trade routes, taking hold across Asia. Both symbolically and architecturally, the religious monuments we'll now explore demonstrate strong ties to the landscapes of their settings.

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 6. Empire Building: Rome and Central America

This lecture is the first of a sequence of two lectures that focus on the building of empire, looking at the empires established in Rome, China and Central (or Meso-) America. We will look at the architectural forms and effects on the built environment of these political systems. In the case of Rome and China we are discussing vast territorial holdings and long durations - and we have a great deal of information about each of these empires. The situation in Central Amer...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 7. Empire Building: Central America and China

This lecture will focus on the building of empires, how were the empires manifested in the built environment? We have looked at Rome and then moved to Meso or Central America, where we will pick up today and finally to China. These were distinct empires, sharing characteristics but as with all of the built environments we have studied, there are specific response to place, to landscape, to environment, to culture, and to practices including trade, politics, and power. ...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 8. Medieval Cities and Castles

This lecture will focus on the question of how did secular developments and trade influence the form of cities in the later medieval period? The increasing importance of cities as places of trade, commerce, defense, and culture is a development that parallels the rise of Gothic architecture in Europe. A part of the rise of the city reflects the growing significance of building and environments that are not tied to the church or to religious institutions but instead serv...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

This course aims to provide an introduction to the growing importance of cultural heritage and historic preservation. Over the past decades, fostered not the least through international organization like UNESCO’s World Heritage Center or the New York based World Monuments Fund, heritage preservation has become a global movement. Following a historical and comparative perspective the course seeks to go beyond the Euro-American understanding of architectural heritage which ... continue reading

Lecture 1. Forces: Preservation as a Global Movement

This lecture introduces both the notion and the dynamics of heritage as a global movement. Starting with Rem Koolhaas’ provocative statement “preservation is overtaking us”, the lecture aims to show why heritage has become an important topic for architects and architectural historians. For this the lecture focuses on three different forces: urbanization, tourism and identity.

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 2. Origins: Preservation and the Dual Revolution in 19th Century Europe

The aim of this lecture is to explore the emergence of preservation and conservation as public policy activities in Europe. Following the argument that preservation is a modern undertaking, it shows how preservation practices emerged from both the political and the industrial revolution. The lecture is divided in five parts. The first part introduces the topic by questioning the universality of preservation. The second part discusses the interest in documenting antiquity i...

supporting documments: • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 3. Expansions: How Architectural Conservation Became International

This lecture explores the internationalization of the preservation movement as a “modern cult” (Riegl). It is organized into three parts: the first part deals with the global expansion of the “cult” in the context of World Fairs. The second part addresses responses to WWI in terms that addressed issues related to technology and functionality in the realm of architecture and preservation. The third part focuses on the “Salvage of Abu Simbel” – the celebrated showcase of UNE...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 4. Elevations: From Heritage to World Heritage

This lecture discusses the political dimension of the UNESCO World Heritage Convention as a legal contract between the UNESCO and the individual member states that have signed the convention. The first part explains the background of the convention. The second part explains how the convention actually works. The third part addresses the challenges the World Heritage Convention is facing.

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Document

Lecture 5. Frictions: Preservation Between Citizen and Expert

This lecture discusses the tensions and frictions that arise when heritage infringes upon the life of those living in and with heritage sites. At the center stands the conflict between object-focused experts and the national government issuing the laws regulating preservation, and the local communities where preservation is enacted. In other words, as much as heritage can be a matter of national pride it can also be a source of conflict over ownership. Once again the ques...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 6. Materialities: Experience, Memory and Authenticity

This lecture will address issues surrounding architectural materiality, and the way in which materiality is factored in into strategies of architectural preservation that are filtered through memory. Many of these themes also relate to the rather ambiguous concept of authenticity, particularly with regards to the role that materiality plays in the establishment of what might be considered the “genuine” or the “original” character of an architectural form. This module will ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Document

Lecture 7. The Intangible: Beyond the Built Heritage

This lecture will address issues surrounding the immaterial and the question of “intangible” heritage with regards to how conceptual, not physical, elements such as memory, orality, and historical practice play a role in strategies of architectural preservation. Many of these themes also (again) access the rather ambiguous concept of authenticity, particularly with regards to the role that the proceedings of the 1994 Nara Conference played in highlighting the necessity of ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 8. Values: Competing Perspectives

The lecture focuses on the different forms, types and value criteria when discussing heritage and preservation. Is “value” rooted in the architectural object or in the quality of the relationships enabled by the object? Or is “value” first and foremost an economic asset that needs to be judged in terms of the amount of revenue that a particular heritage is able to generate? Since heritage is a heterogeneous concept, it is not surprising that the notion of value in heritage...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 9. Justice Preservation, Recognition and Trauma

This lecture will address issues surrounding the multiple and entangled functions of heritage in cases where issues of trauma, disenfranchisement, and oppression make up a large part of a structure’s narrative. It will focus specifically on the politics of cultural identity, recognition, and social remembrance and how heritage conservation, especially with regards to “difficult heritage,” can never just be concerned with the preservation of the physical structure, but also...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 10. Properties: Disputes Over Ownership

This lecture looks at the relationship between heritage and property on a national, global and local level. In doing so, it seeks to explore the relationship between heritage and the power of control. Ownership of heritage gives the right to control access to places, as well as and the information people are allowed to know once they are at a particular site. We will look into several key concepts and ideas including repatriation, the right to preserve a particular version...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 11. Copies: Cultural Takes On Originality

This lecture will address issues surrounding architectural mimicry, and the roles this approach to structural form plays in reimagining heritage, tradition, and authenticity. It also provokes discussions concerning the idea of architectural heritage as not only unique and one-of-a-kind, but also fundamentally place-based with its originality fundamentally embedded in a specific time / place matrix as a requirement for the establishment of what might be considered the “genu...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 12. Futures: Vision, Virtuality, and Digital Heritage

This final lecture considers both heritage and its documentation, specifically around 20 and 21st century “digital heritage” and digital capture technologies. We will look at the emergence of “digital heritage”, the most recent UNESCO category of heritage with its own unique form of conservation and preservation. Two case studies will be able to address several themes, including memory, authenticity, and preservation.

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

The cultural and artistic traditions that developed around the shores of the Mediterranean have traditionally been studied as autonomous developments. When exchanges or borrowing were acknowledged, they usually focused on the influence that European motifs had on the Eastern Mediterranean, starting in the eighteenth century. The aim of this project is to focus on preceding centuries, illuminating the rich web of cultural, artistic and especially architectural exchanges tha... continue reading

Lecture 1. Orient AND Rome: New Answers to a Very Old Question

This lecture poses our fundamental historiographical question: what are the origins of medieval European architecture?  In Part I, it rehearses the conventional answer—that medieval art and architecture continue western, classical traditions; but it confronts that answer with the realization that we simply haven’t sufficiently conceived the late antique and early medieval world as one in which the East and the West were strongly interconnected.  By surveying some of the ma...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 2. Syrian Architecture and Byzantine Domes

Pendentive domes—or domes with a circular plan used as vaulting for a square hall—emerged in Byzantine architecture. That well known fact has not, however, been explained. This lecture offers an explanation for the elaboration of pendentives as the result of the encounter of two different architectural practices concerning domes: classical Roman and eastern vaulting traditions. Roman builders made the footprint of vaulting match the footprint of the room or structure that ...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 3. Umayyad Architecture in Syria

This lecture presents early Islamic, or Umayyad, Architecture and its relationship to Late Antiquity. It examines the sequence of well-known Umayyad monuments, which appear to have engaged in a vibrant referencing process that treated Antiquity as a heritage to appropriate, build upon, or, sometimes, to deconstruct.  In that it did not differ much from Latin Europe and Byzantium, both of which looked to the classical heritage as theirs through the lens of Christianity. B...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 4. Where is Armenia?

The medieval monuments of the Armenian high plateau, at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, are typically ignored in histories of art and architecture. Yet they are abundant, sophisticated in design and decoration, and bear inscriptions of historical importance. This lecture will introduce the architecture of medieval Armenia, demonstrating the importance of Armenian monuments for an understanding of the seventh century, when the Armenian plateau was at the center (and not ...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 5. Forms and Mechanisms of Exchange in the Medieval Western Mediterranean

The Great Mosque of Cordoba, founded around 784 and expanded in the latter half of the tenth century, is one of the most striking monuments of world architecture. The red and white arches that distinguish its prayer hall and portals, its interior support system of double arcades, polylobed arched screens, and its gold mosaics and ribbed domes are iconic. Yet, while this monument is undoubtedly innovative, details of its construction and decoration also illustrate how medie...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 6. Eastern Influences on the Architecture of Western Europe

Christian Europe expected the world to end in the year 1000. When that fateful year passed, a century and a half of church building (with attendant sculpture and painting) followed, on a scale and of sophistication not seen since the fall of the Roman Empire. In 1814, Thomas Rickman coined for the architecture of this period the term “Romanesque,” that is to say, “like the Romans.” The term colored the perception of architectural historians studying that period. They focus...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Entitled as the Peripheries of Contact - Beyond Geographies and Historical Flatland, this course examines the dynamic peripheries of a cultural region (area) - a global region loosely defined not only by its ethno-linguistic character, but more importantly, by its inherently intertwined environment and culture. Given that cultural regions have adjoined each other, often connecting (and sharing) the same periphery (or peripheries), these cultural regions are also viewed as ... continue reading

Lecture 1. Introduction

This first lecture introduces the broad theme of Peripheries of Contact - Beyond Geographies and Historical Flatland, questioning how this theme be conceptually examined. It proposes four ways to visualize cultural histories, in particular the histories of architectural and urban 'making and un-making': - As an overarching concept of Periphery (versus the center) - a new way of looking at history - The Periphery 'condition' as akin to a thick ‘cultural zone’ or li...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers • Handout

Lecture 2. The World of Many Worlds: Persianate World 1

In looking at the architecture of the Persianate world with respect to its peripheries, this lecture starts by defining the term 'Persianate', and the complex cultural context of what actually comprised the Persianate world? Why could this 'condition' be better described as'a world of many Worlds?' What were the geographical boundaries of this land that effectively comprised of not only multiple ethnicities and people resident, but scores other transient and nomadic? ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 3. Space-time Moments - Persianate World 2

This second lecture on the Persianate World introduces four space-time moments that were critical to the intertwined histories of this region. On this particular front, the arrival of Islam as a new religion in this land was perhaps as important as the inter-mixing of nomadic and sedentary cultures. Within the Persianate world, the arrival of Islam is followed by transition and change, and later its deep assimilation within local beliefs. Meanwhile, the cultural inter-...

supporting documments: • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Lecture Notes

Lecture 4. The Cultural Matrix: Slavic World and Beyond 1

The first Slavic lecture introduces the origins, name, geographies and the versatility of the historic Slavs. It discusses how in Western historiography the Slavs are traditionally presented as peripheral to the development of the Western Europe. In response, this lecture shifts the perspective to examine how that Slavs’ peripheral geographic and cultural location enabled them to develop as a central connective link between different cultural regions, variable lifestyl...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 5. The Cultural Matrix: Slavic World and Beyond 2

The second Slavic lecture proceeds to illustrate the architectural consequences of the complex center-periphery relationships throughout pre-modern and early modern periods in Slavic history. The four cultural moments are accompanied by multiple examples of construction in different Rus’ principalities, often in seeming reaction towards external threats and/or potential invasions. How these inventive idioms actually become inherited traits of architecture across generation...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 6. Indian Subcontinent 1

The first lecture on the Indian Subcontinent discusses it as a realm of isolated centers and ‘thick’ peripheries, controlled by its specific geographies. It illustrates how much of Indian medieval history remains replete with the contesting control of these centers and the geographical features that ‘contain’ these centers. On these lines, no longer does a linguistic and/or political assessment suffice to explain the idea of the subcontinent as a cultural region. Could...

supporting documments: • Document • Document • Document

Lecture 7. Indian Subcontinent 2

The second lecture on the Indian Subcontinent examines the four space-time moments that serve to frame the histories of region's thick and mercurial peripheries, particularly in the northwest and north, often conjoining with aspects of geography and topography to produce unique conditions. India's 'landed' peripheries appear to have behaved rather differently versus its hydro edges - an observation that accounts for the pronounced 'incoming' interactions from mountainous v...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 8. Central Asia 1

This lecture suggests how Nomadic Eurasia must be viewed as Spatial interregnum or Cultural Matrix, versus as a conventional region. Besides its unbroken geographies, alongside continuous ‘land’ connections and movement ‘corridors’ connected a ‘matrix’ of influence, it was also a conspicuous and transforming, trans-spatial social network of changing nodes, versus fixed and physically defined centers. It was this confederation of tribal solidarities versus landed empire/s a...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 9. Central Asia 2

his lecture continues stories from the Nomadic Steppe, in particular describing the four space- time moments that served as the critical disruptions with this cultural region. All of these moments were catalyzed by the mass movements of populations across this 'unbroken' land(ed) terrain, stretching substantially east-west and north-south. That nomads—often viewed as peoples with no permanent artifacts and iconographic imageries—were able to 'carry' and 'transfer' cultura...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 10. Conclusions

The concluding lecture presents how the four cultural regions were part of a world system that effectively inter-connected distant regions, often encompassing ’landed’ and/or ‘hydro’ connections. By the thirteenth century, these inter-connected regions included substantially large areas—inherently removed from each other, but almost always related via ‘accessible’ networks of trade and exchange, which began at the peripheries and displayed relevance as these elements of...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz with Answers

This three-part lecture covers the history and context of Petra, a site in Jordan. It was one of several sites that were created by the Nabateans, who came to dominate the area of west Jordan and the Sinai between the 3rd century BCE and the 4rd century CE. Originally a nomadic Arabian tribe, they settled into the region to control and stabilize the trade routes between Africa and India to the south and the Hellenized and Roman world to the north. The managed to control ... continue reading

Lecture 1. The Nabatean World

These lectures cover the history and context of Petra, a site in Jordan. It was one of several sites that were created by the Nabateans, who came to dominate the area of west Jordan and the Sinai between the the 3rd century BCE and the 4rd century CE. Originally a nomadic Arabian tribe, they settled into the region to control and stabilize the trade routes between Africa and India to the south and the Hellenized and Roman world to the north. The managed to control land i...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 2. Hospitality Economy of Shrines and Spas

These lectures cover the history and context of Petra, a site in Jordan. It was one of several sites that were created by the Nabateans, who came to dominate the area of west Jordan and the Sinai between the the 3rd century BCE and the 4rd century CE. Originally a nomadic Arabian tribe, they settled into the region to control and stabilize the trade routes between Africa and India to the south and the Hellenized and Roman world to the north. The managed to control land i...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Lecture 3. Romanization and Caravanic Display

These lectures cover the history and context of Petra, a site in Jordan. It was one of several sites that were created by the Nabateans, who came to dominate the area of west Jordan and the Sinai between the the 3rd century BCE and the 4rd century CE. Originally a nomadic Arabian tribe, they settled into the region to control and stabilize the trade routes between Africa and India to the south and the Hellenized and Roman world to the north. The managed to control land i...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes

Earth is 70 percent water, but only 2.5 percent of this superabundant liquid is fresh. And, two-thirds of this minuscule amount of fresh water is inaccessible— locked away in ice caps, glaciers, and rocky underground aquifers. Only a tiny fraction of Earth’s potable water is readily available to humans. Even though this hydro-ecological view of the planet is a modern one, it should, nonetheless, paint a broader historical picture of how both access to and management of wat... continue reading

Lecture 1. “Water Is the Matter” (Sumerian proverb): Water Management in Mesopotamia, 5000 - 300 BCE

This lecture module examines the role of two rivers—the Euphrates and the Tigris—in shaping both the Mesopotamian perceptions of water and hydraulic infrastructures that made Mesopotamia a thriving river-valley civilization. Rising in Turkey/Armenia, the Euphrates and the Tigris flew southward through a harsh desert environment for 2,430 km and 1,850 km, respectively. On entry to modern-day Iraq, the two rivers form a Jezira, or “island,” between them. The rivers unite at ...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Bibliography

Lecture 2. The Cult of the Nile: Hydrological Engineering and Architecture in Pharaonic Egypt, 3500-1000 BCE

This lecture examines how the Nile laid the sociocultural, political, and economic foundations of the Egyptian civilization. The ancient Egyptians didn’t know the source of the Nile River. They thought that this “mysterious” river came to the earth from heaven. For them, it was a deific force of the universe, “the Great River,” itr-âa, or “the Sea,” iumâ. They called it Hapi, a god in human form. As recorded by the Greek historian Herodotus, the Egyptian priests consider...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Bibliography

Lecture 3. Hydraulic Architecture of Peru, Bolivia, and Mesoamerica, 3000–1000 CE

The shift from a subsistence economy based on hunting and gathering to one based on food production by cultivating plants and domesticating animals and water is a watershed in human history. The shift to an agriculture-based economy, and the complex systems of water management that it warranted, transpired only in a few independent centers around the world. One such center was Peru, where advanced settlements and agro-pastoral activities flourished as early as 5000 BCE. Sm...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Bibliography

Lecture 4. Water Engineering and Urbanism of the Indus Valley Civilization, 5000-1500 BCE

The Indus Valley civilization (also known as the Harappan civilization or Indus-Saraswati civilization) was virtually unknown until 1921, when excavations in the Indian Subcontinent revealed the cities of Harappa and Mohenjo-daro. Archaeology demonstrates that these cities were highly urbanized, served by sophisticated water-management infrastructures. With contested provenance, this “mysterious” civilization reached a mature urban phase around 2500 BCE and thrived for a t...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Bibliography

Lecture 5. A “Million Men With Teaspoons”: The Politics of Hydraulic Management in China, 2300 BCE-750 CE

This lecture module explores different philosophical and engineering approaches to early Chinese water management systems and how they related to various political contexts and dynastic rules. By taking this course, students are expected to learn how “water politics” informed and shaped the early Chinese civilization. The module begins with the Xia Dynasty (2100–1600 BCE) and its legendary founder Yu the Great’s “Taoist approach” to river management and concludes with t...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Bibliography

Lecture 6. “May the Waters Bring Us Well-Being,” (Atharva Veda): The Ganges and the Pilgrimage Architecture of Varanasi, 500 BCE-500 CE

Focusing on Varanasi, the most sacred Hindu pilgrimage city on the bank of the Ganges, this lecture module demonstrates how a particular land-water confluence creates a sacrosanct urban center. Varanasi’s urban experience is marked by an elaborate system of ghats (steps leading to the river) that serve as “temples” dedicated to the sacred water of the Ganges. Hindus come to Varanasi to worship the Ganges water, perform funeral rites, and attain moksha or nirvana. The flowi...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Bibliography

Lecture 7. Aquatic Paradise in the Desert: The Water Distribution System of the Nabataean City of Petra, 300 BCE-300 CE

This lecture module examines how the Aegean world’s “islandscape” and hot and semiarid Mediterranean climate warranted architecture and city design driven by strategic water management systems. In many ways, hydraulic engineering in Greek mainland and islands were different than those in Mesopotamia and Egypt. Mesopotamian and Egyptian civilizations predominantly relied on the exploitation of the discharge of large rivers (i.e., Tigris, Euphrates, and Nile). Although Mesop...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Bibliography

Lecture 8. “Ants and Frogs Round a Pond”: Hydraulic Architecture by the Minoans, Mycenaeans, and Ancient Greeks, 2100-146 BCE

This lecture module explains how “supplying water, displaying hygiene, and extending authority” became intertwined narratives in the administrative bureaucracy of the Roman Empire. In the late first century CE, Rome’s water commissioner Sextus Julius Frontinus proudly wrote in his water-related treatise, De aquaeductu urbis Romae: "Just compare with the vast monuments of this vital aqueduct network those useless Pyramids, or the good-for-nothing tourist attractions of the ...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Bibliography

Lecture 9. Supplying Water, Displaying Hygiene, and Extending Authority: The Power and Pride of Water Management in Rome and Constantinople, 400 BCE-600 CE

This lecture modules examines how the strategic and economic rise of the Nabataean city of Petra—located at the crucial intersection of trade routes, connecting the Mediterranean world, Arabia, Africa, and the Far East—also provided the impetus to develop sophisticated hydraulic systems to sustain a burgeoning urban population and various water needs. Steadily rising since 300 BCE as a nomadic settlement, Petra came under the Roman fold in 106 CE and continued on as an imp...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Bibliography

Lecture 10. The Water-Fragile Civilization: Hydraulic Technology and Environmental Adaptation in the Early Islamic World, 610–1258 CE

This lecture module focuses on how the water-fragile civilization of Islam adapted to the harsh desert environments of Arabia, the Mesopotamian region, and North Africa, and to different geographic conditions of Andalucía, Spain. Islam’s theological framing of water has been conditioned by the fact this faith emerged in the water-scarce desert of Arabia. Most of the year it is hot and dry, with rainfall generally concentrated in brief periods during short winters. Furtherm...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout • Quiz with Answers • Bibliography

Southeast Asia is unique in the world because of the intersection of environmental, geologically and geographic realities. As a tropical environment, it supplied cinnamon, scented woods, bird’s nest and a vast array of other luxury, forest goods. Geologically, it possessed gold, gems and diamonds and geographically, located between Indian and China, it could supply these luxury goods to eager markets. The people who lived there were, in one way or another, forest-based ani... continue reading

Lecture 1. Southeast Asia Wealth Economy and The Emergence Of The Hindu Temple City Model

This lecture introduces the general principles of the process known as Indianization, which begins more or less around 200 CE and continues for the next centuries as palace elites establish themselves across southeast Asia. The lecture points to the extraordinary commodity wealth in the tropics, that that could NOT be found in India or China but that the Indian and Chinese elites wanted, such as gems, gold, diamonds, pearls, incense, dried barks and bird’s nests. These wer...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz

Lecture 2. Buddhism and Beyond

This lecture introduces Buddhism in general, then follows it to Sri Lanka where it became a state religion in the 3rd century BCE. While Buddhism began to disappear in India, it flourished in Sri Lanka where its new elites created Anuradhapura into a major Buddhist ritual center. The new India-derived elites were drawn to Sri Lanka for obvious reasons. It was rich in pearls and rubies, that were mined in forest streams - basically a place of easy wealth. These luxury goods...

supporting documments: • Handout • Document • Document

Lecture 3. Animist Hybridization in South East Asia

This lecture exposes the student an issue important to the SE Asia worldview, Animism. More or less ignored in the literature or treated as ‘Folk Religion,’ a more accurate portrayal would show that when Buddhism – and Hinduism as well - came to southeast Asia, it stepped into a forest-village world that was heavily connected to ancient traditions of animism. Both religions had to adjust and accommodate. In India, Animism had already morphed in Hinduism, even though there...

supporting documments: • Document • Document • Document

Lecture 4. Java at The Crossroads: Borobudur and Prambanan Part 1

This lecture looks at the great architectural accomplishments of the Medang or Mataram Kingdom – later the Srivijayan Empire. They became fabulously wealthy based on trade along the Malacca Straits. To attract and accommodate both Buddhist and Hindu devotees they built a host of temples for both religions. They also created a unique system of intensifying the sacredness of the landscape by the introduction of small free-standing temples known as the Candy. I discuss their...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz

Lecture 5. Java at The Crossroads: Borobudur and Prambanan Part 2

This lecture discusses the design features and innovations of Prambanan and Sewu both of these very complex buildings from a theological and functional point of view. Both are further examples of the thematics of the mandala which is blended with the imaginary of a holy mountain. Both also have complex theological meanings that even today are not fully understood. The lecture also discusses what is now missing in much of the experiences of these places, the dance ceremonia...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz

Lecture 6. The Khmer: The Kings of Rice

This lecture starts with a look at the larger role of SE Asia in the world economy. The drying out of Inner Asia and its depopulation meant the end of the Silk Route tradition. The energy moved to the south, to India and thus to SE Asia. This was one of the main contributing factors for while SE Asia prospered so much between 400 and 1200, but in particular after the 9th century. This lecture introduces the Khmer and their capital Angkor. It was a bold experiment in hydro-...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz

Lecture 7. The Geo-Politics of the Khmer and the Construction of Vrah Vishnulok

This lecture is Part 2 of the Angkor story. It focuses first on the economic positioning of the Angkor, a story that is rarely told. The problem for Angkor was that it was founded in a forest, not along the shore as most other SE Asian Palace economies. The problem was how to get their rice to market. Their purpose was to produce a rice surplus economy. But the problem they were not close to the trade routes. To their advantage was the fact that the Chinese were in trouble...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz

Lecture 8. South East Asian Expansions and Contractions

This lecture helps round out the general story of prosperity that marked southeast Asia between 800 and about 1250. The lecture looks at the Champa and Pagan, the two cultures that flanked the Khmer. All of them were hugely successful in the regional trade business. Champa were not major rice growers. Their wealth came from coastal luxury trade to China. The same was true for Pagan, except that they controlled the over-land route to Dali and then to China. Both of these c...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz

Lecture 9. Borneo and the River Longhouse Worlds

This lecture covers the longhouse cultures of Borneo. Unlike the palace-based elites who dominated the cross India-China trade in SE Asia, and which we have discussed in earlier lectures, Borneo never developed a palace-based system. Instead traders stayed on the shore to develop shore-based trading stations. They traded with inland communities – the longhouse cultures – who dominated the forests. Much of the goods that the shore communities wanted came from the forest, an...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes • Quiz

Lecture 10. Islamizations

In contrast with earlier Buddhafications, Islamization in Southeast Asia was a more or less continuous and gradual process: -7th Century Muslims traveled to and from China via port towns of mainland and island Southeast Asia eventually establishing Muslim merchant enclaves in the port cities of the region. -With the fall of Hindu-Buddhist Srivijaya (Sumatra, 13th c.) and Majapahit (Java, 15th c.) Sufi teachers converted rulers followed later by gradual conversions of sub...

supporting documments: • Quiz • Lecture Notes

“Sites and Systems of Global Colonialism” is a survey course that introduces students to building cultures, landscapes and urbanisms in an already globally connected world from the colonial era through 1900. The course examines multiple overlapping systems by which the practices of human cultures have come to be interconnected around the world over time. It is a history of the world through architectural evidence, and a history of architecture through a global perspective.... continue reading

Lecture 1. Portuguese Goa: Evangelical Colonialism from Africa to Asia

Evangelical colonialisms are characterized by combining projects of religious conversion with the use of force to impose dominant trade relations. While religion played a more or less significant role in European moral justification for imposing control over the peoples, cultures and societies of the rest of the world, the evangelizing mission of the Catholic powers of the Iberian Peninsula, now known as Portugal and Spain, were so deeply integrated with the mechanisms of ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes

Lecture 2. Spanish Mexico: Evangelical Colonialism and the Encomienda System

The site for this lecture is the Presidential Palace, in Mexico City via Cordoba and Sevilla. This lecture will focus on the system of forced displacement using religious and urban architectures built over the remains of indigenous structures. The Spanish method of conversion and occupation requires that existing sites of power, be used as the foundations for new architectures of religion and political control. The Influence of mujedar architectures in New Spain will also ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes

Lecture 3. Spanish Peru: Evangelical Colonialism, the Laws of the Indies and the Extractive Economy

The labor system of Encomienda was extended to the Viceroyalty of Peru using the physical forms and institutions of the Spanish Catholic Church and the Laws of the Indies. Similarities with the Inca tribute labor obligations smoothed the transition to the Spanish Encomienda implemented with particular violence in the extraction of silver at the mines of Potosí (Bolivia). As elsewhere, the Encomienda was part and parcel of the Spanish rulers’ obligation to baptize, educate,...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 4. Spanish Cartagena: Evangelical Colonialism and the Architecture of Fortification

Over the course of several generations, the Spanish transformed the excellent port of Cartagena into one of the most effectively defended harbors in history. Through the fortifications of the port, town, fortified hill, and especially through a series of strategic choke-points between the port, inner harbor, outer harbor and the sea resulted in a deadly gauntlet of remarkable force despite the relatively small number of ships, cannon, and soldiers emplaced there. The gre...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes

Lecture 5. Dutch Batavia: Company Colonialism

From the 15th Century through the 19th Century the naval power and ocean-going trade routes determined who is the most powerful empire in the world. By the end 17th Century, the Portuguese and the Spanish had largely been crowded out of the Indian Ocean and Asia by the Dutch and the English, both of whom were already making forays into North America as well. In this module, we see how the representation of a country on a map of the world using a uniform color and a sharp ...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes

Lecture 6. Dutch Amsterdam: Company Colonialism

The United Provinces of the Netherlands was a loose confederation of seven semi-autonomous republican states (Holland, Zeeland, Utrecht, Overijssel, Gröningen, Gelderland and Friesland) that had won independence from Spain during the Eighty Years War (1568-1648). Dutch national policy was formulated by delegates from the seven provinces at the States-General in The Hague. The war between the Netherlands and Spain was advantageous to English merchants, who could trade in S...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 7. English Calcutta: Company Colonialism

Calcutta as the English Capital of the Indian Ocean. There are two Systems of English Capitalist Power in India System 1Company Colonialism which in this lecture is defined by economic extractive power of East India Company and how reshapes the world through desire, addiction, wealth, violence and global war. System 2 is the deployment of Classicism as a means of Imperial Power, Christianity and Colonialism Calcutta demonstrates the Power of the East India Company i...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 8. English London: Company Colonialism

During the 18th and 19th centuries England develops its colonial infrastructures to become the most successful colonizer in history operating out of its global headquarters, London. As in the case of Amsterdam, London’s prosperity was derived from extractive activities around the World. In 1688, Protestant Dutch Burgher Willem of Orange became William III of England. Under the Dutch-burgher-turned-King William III, England adapts rapidly to the Dutch system of commerce. E...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes

Lecture 9. Ouro Preto and Rio De Janiero: The Triangle Trade and the Architectures of the Slave Economy

The Triangle Trade system refers to the movement west across the Atlantic of forcibly extracted human beings for slaves who arrive in the Americas to produce raw goods gold, silver sugar, tobacco, timber, whale oil, and cotton for the Mercantile systems of Europe. Those goods are then sent to Europe where they are sold back to the colonies in the Americas and Africa as finished or luxury goods. This is known as mercantilism it is designed to keep the colonies subservien...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 10. Haiti and the French Revolution: The Triangle Trade and the Architectures of the Slave Economy

Most histories of this period focus on the twin Revolutions in France and the United States. However, it was the Slave Revolution in what would become Haiti that changes the world in this period. This lecture explores the the architectures of the French Revolution and Empire through the island of S. Dominique (Haitian) and the Slave Revolution. It emphasizes the importance of of sugar, rum production, plantation slavery and the Louisiana Purchase as understood from the pe...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes

Lecture 11. Liverpool: The Triangle Trade and the Architectures of the Slave Economy

For nearly two centuries, the price of cotton in Liverpool determined the fate of the most lucrative markets in the World. From the displacement of indigenous populations in the American South for cotton plantations, to the massive movement of West Africans to work those plantations. The theme of this lecture is that slavery and the desire for goods such as cotton, sugar, coffee, gold transforms the modern world. The economics of slavery is embedded in the form and creatio...

supporting documments: • Lecture Notes • Handout

Lecture 12. Savannah: The Triangle Trade and the Architectures of the Slave Economy

This site explores the impact of slavery through cotton and the railroad by examining and how the slave economy made through its control over cotton and rice. Savannah, with its famous plan and mythical utopian origins, uses slavery, cotton, rice, and architecture to grow from a small colonial outpost to a lynchpin in the global economy. Christianity, Classical architectures, the railroad and extractive violent capitalism were used justified inhumanity and cruelty over on...

supporting documments: • Handout • Lecture Notes

This course approaches architecture as a form of knowledge like cinema, literature, or history. Except unlike these other mediums, it is both aesthetic, intellectual, spatial and material. It is both haptic and contemplative. Architecture defines who we are. It is a potent tool for the construction of gender identities, class, self and the other. It helps internalize religious beliefs, political ideologies, and all sorts of power relations. Just think of the organizati... continue reading

Lecture 1. Course Introduction

Global architectural histories undermine the spurious mythologies of race, nationalism, and ethnicity often at the heart of political conflict. They illustrate architectural objects while locally manifested, are invariably impacted, manipulated, or redefined by global vectors such as technologies that travel across space and time. These technologies provide students with critical knowledge and skills to understand their built environment as situated within wider network...

supporting documments:

Lecture 3. Ship I

This lecture presents some of the key ways in which early boats and ships have influenced architecture and organization of space starting some 3000 BCE. Boats and ships are the oldest and most enduring technology of globalization. They not only facilitated repeated attempts of people to spread out of Africa. They produced new type of urban centers, port cities / exchange hubs, trading centers, special building typologies like warehouses and shoreline factories designed esp...

supporting documments: • Lecture Abstract • Bibliography • Handout • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 4. Camel and Horse

The lecture today looks at horse and camel as vital technologies of globalization. The transformation of camel from a food and textile source to a draft and saddle animal, likewise, the re-envisioning of horse beyond a source of meat, bones and skin into riding animals turned them from food and things into technologies. They introduced easier ways of traversing and living in inhospitable climates. Camels brought the ability to carry goods while horses brought speed to tra...

supporting documments: • Quiz

Lecture 5. The Wheel

The role of the wheel in architecture stretches from 3500 BCE when it was first invented, to the present. In fact, many of the future lectures such as the printing press, railways, elevator, automobile, subways, roads II, tourism, airplane, even the computer and the internet are not possible without the invention of the wheel. This lecture however focuses on the impact of the early wheel on architectural expression. Advances in wheel technology were slow; the first wheels ...

supporting documments: • Bibliography • Lecture Abstract • Handout • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 6. Road Networks in the Medieval World

This lecture argues that architectural forms were significantly impacted by the proliferation of road networks in the pre-modern world. Specifically three types of impact can be observed across the 5 case-studies: Changes in built form: 1) The expansion of empires along road networks precipitated the standardization and replication of certain built forms in order to create a homogenous visual order in the empire as well as provide infrastructure for the imperial subjec...

supporting documments: • Quiz

Lecture 7. Camel as an Early Technology of Globalization

Traditional wisdom holds the wheel to be one of mankind’s cleverest inventions and the camel to be one of God’s clumsiest. But from 200-600 CE camel cultures came to dominate the world scene. The invention of Southern Arabian saddle extended possibilities for herders by also making them into trekkers and merchants. The corollary was the monopoly of land trade by camel cultures without dependence on older infrastructure of imperial Roman roads. This reversed the socio econo...

supporting documments: • Bibliography • Lecture Abstract • Quiz with Answers • Handout

Lecture 9. Architecture and Mapping

This lecture examines the interrelationship between mapmaking technologies and architecture through the lens of three themes: 1. Pictographic vs. chorographic representations of architecture, 2. The measurement and locative functions of architecture, 3. Architecture and its relationship to topography. The first theme explores how pictographic mapping of architecture tended to represent its symbolic function and likened architecture to writing and thus the built environment...

supporting documments: • Bibliography • Handout • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 11. Around the World in Several Miniatures, a Few Souvenirs, and One Miniature

The case-studies in this lecture will investigate how miniatures, souvenirs, and replicas work as architectural technologies of communication and movement. The objects under investigation here all point to movement and or transportation in some form or the other. Contrary to the primary function of architecture as an inhabitable space or form of shelter, miniatures and souvenirs are often scaled down versions of an original that are used as fetishes or objects of sentiment...

supporting documments: • Lecture Abstract • Bibliography • Handout • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 12. Pilgrimage in the Medieval World

Two main types of structures associated with Buddhism—the vihara (place of congregation and idol worship) and the stupa (reliquary). Stupa is a place for the storage and veneration of relics associated with the Buddha’s and his disciples bodies. Rituals such as circumambulation define structures such as the stupa. Relics (such as miniature models of the Mahaboddhi temple) proliferate throughout the medieval Buddhist world. Xuanzang travels to India in the 7th cen. to find ...

supporting documments: • Quiz

Lecture 13. Architecture and Timekeeping

Architecture has long acted as a form of timekeeping, though what constituted time and how it was defined across history and cultures varies greatly. Contrary to our contemporary relationship with time as precisely measureable and something that individuals can control; historic communities had a more reverential attitude to time. This is seen in the sacred rituals practiced within and around architecture that also told of the movement of stars and the passing of seasons. ...

supporting documments: • Lecture Abstract • Bibliography • Handout • Quiz with Answers

Lecture 15. Infrastructure: Water Systems, Land Manipulation, and Bridges

This lecture covers prehistory to the present, demonstrating the enduring and fundamental scope of infrastructure in the construction of society. Projects also cover a wide geography, demonstrating the universal significance of infrastructure. What, exactly, is infrastructure? Common definition is “The basic physical and organizational structures and facilities needed for the operation of a society of enterprise.” (Merriam Webster) This thusly draws a distinction ...

supporting documments: • Quiz

Lecture 17. The Ship II

Historians tend to think of human history in terms of major events and famous personalities happening in kingdoms and nation-states--that is in land-bound terms. But as Carl Schmitt, pointed out, some of the most important developments have been connected with the sea and evolving technologies for traversing it and exploiting its resources. In our Ship I lecture, we looked at the ship as a technical and aesthetic object in ancient cultures like Haida, Minoa, and Egypt. ...

supporting documments: • Quiz

Lecture 23. The Mobility of Architectural Knowledge

This lecture considers some of the different modes in which architectural knowledge has circulated since the fifteenth century. Today, in our contemporary context where rapid and economical reproductive technologies are available to many people, we have come to think of written texts and photographic images as the primary means through which architectural knowledge circulates. If we consider the period before printed works were widely available, the architects themselves c...

supporting documments: • Lecture Abstract • Bibliography • Handout • Quiz with Answers