Architecture/Reading group

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Welcome to the reading group of Wikiversity's School of Architecture. Here we will discuss and reflect on different readings and books.

History group[edit]

Session 1[edit]

This first session we will be an introduction to the subject. We begin by reading three texts which introduce the subject, and then a text about Vitruvius' theory. (You will do these readings as homework.) Then we'll begin discussing and writing a collaborative document on the purpose of architectural history and theory.

For this session we will be reading the following material:

  • An Outline of European Architecture by Nikolaus Pevsner, 2009. (Introduction)
  • The Rise of Architectural History by David Watkin, 1983. (Preface)
  • A History of Architectural Theory from Vitruvius to Present by Hanno-Walter Kruft, 1994. (p. 13-29)

After reading, answer the following questions in your notebook:

  • How does Pevsner define architecture and its history? And what about Watkin? Explain why you agree or disagree with their views respectively. Make sure to provide examples to support your argument.
  • What is architectural history? And what is its role/purpose in the architect's education?
  • How does Kruft define architectural theory? Write a paragraph explaining why you agree or disagree.
  • What is the difference between architectural theory and criticism? And what is it's role in the architect's education?
  • Why do we write, observe and read about architecture as students of architecture? Why do architects draw historical buildings, and why do they read and/or write about architectural theory (and history)?