Architecture Publications

Document Type

Book Review

Publication Date

Spring 2008

Journal or Book Title

Design Issues

Volume

24

Issue

20

First Page

92

Last Page

93

DOI

10.1162/desi.2008.24.2.92

Abstract

In this easy-to-read and provocative little book, architecture professor Colin Davies sets out to do no less than “shed light on the true nature of modern architecture” (7) by placing the prefabricated house at the center of a reconceptualized history of twentieth-century architectural production. Borrowing the term “field” from Pierre Bourdieu, Davies describes the architecture field as “broader and vaguer” than just “the design of buildings”(7), but narrow in its reliance on star personalities, professional jargon, excessive publicity, and the mythologization of its own history. Davies argues that adherence to this position has left the profession unable to assimilate popular notions about architecture and types such as the single-family house; most which, he reminds us, are now designed by non-architects in styles that architects find unappealing. He proposes that the “key to the reform” is an understanding and appreciation of the “non-architectural history of the prefabricated house”(7). This book represents Davies’s attempt to provide this history and to begin bridging the gap between architecture and the consumer-driven home building market.

Comments

This book review is from Design Issues 24 (2008): 92–93, doi:10.1162/desi.2008.24.2.92. Posted with permission.

Copyright Owner

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

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