Irene Cheng of California College of the Arts will give a virtual lecture on Wednesday, April 7 at 2pm via Zoom.
Modern architecture has been deeply shaped by racial theory. To understand how, one must go back at least to the nineteenth century, a period when ideas about progress, rationality, ornament, structure, and hygiene were formulated in dialogue with theories about race. Drawing on her recent publication Race and Modern Architecture: A Critical History from the Enlightenment to the Present (coedited with Charles L. Davis II and Mabel O. Wilson), Irene Cheng will speak on a formative period in the nineteenth century, when well-known architectural thinkers like Owen Jones, Eugène Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc, and James Fergusson were inspired by contemporaneous racial theory to develop their ideas about what kind of architecture would be appropriate for the modern day. Confronting these historical entanglements of race and architectural thought offers clues about how we can work towards an anti-racist architectural discipline in the present.
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