Architecture and Capitalism

Course

3213b
History and Theory

Offered

Spring
2015

This seminar examines the relationship between capitalism and architecture from both a theoretical perspective—Marxism’s/neo-Marxism’s critique of culture, art, and architecture—and from an architectural perspective – architecture’s participation in, resistance to, and speculation about capitalism. The course examines different periods of architectural history from the perspective of theorists and what they had to say about cultural/architectural production and from the perspective of architects and what they had to say about their role in capitalism. The theorists examined include Marx, Ruskin, Simmel, thinkers of the Frankfurt School, Tafuri, Jameson, Slavoj Zizek, Naomi Klein, while the architects include Morris, Muthesius, Gropius, Hilberseimer, Peter Eisenman, Rem Koolhaas. Each week an initial 45-minute lecture by the professor is followed by in-class presentations and discussion by the students. A fifteen-page paper is required at the end of the term. Limited enrollment.