Call for Papers Now Closed
As the conference statement set out, it is proposed to focus the conference on two key areas where questions concerning the relationships between architecture and agency are particularly significant: these concern survival and the environment, and the related possibilities of architectural praxis.
Given the urgency of climate change and environmental degradation, poverty and social disenfranchisement, the architectural humanities research community has been
slow to address environmental concerns: the area has thus been claimed by positivist and empiricist approaches. What new political and social theories have to be considered in architecture in order to address questions of social and environmental survival more responsibly? What new theories of sustainability? What “ecologies” of thinking and practising architecturally might result from such considerations, and how can these be anticipated and addressed within an architectural student’s education?
It may be argued that there has never been a more urgent time for reflection on practice. The present buoyancy of architectural practice in terms of the marketplace is perhaps disguising a deep malaise. Does the architect have a role beyond the production of the object? What is the social and political responsibility of the architect? Where are the ethics of practice located?
What are alternative forms of practice? How does humanities research inform architectural praxis? How might these questions be reflected in architectural education? In what ways might the architect’s palette of materials be transformed, theoretically, to acknowledge issues of agency? How might the responsibilities of
being an intermediary respond to considerations of the media, in all its senses, through which the architect acts?
In what ways can these broader concerns of SURVIVAL and the environment be understood such that everybody’ might be provided with, or provide themselves with, a clearer opportunity to exercise potential agency? In addition to the possibilities for architectural praxis, what is the potential role or capacity of the ‘ordinary’ citizen? What is an agency that is based on the dynamics of everyday life? What are its theoretical and practical tools? What individual and collective forms could be taken by such an agency? How does the shift from the environmental and economic to the social and political operate in this case? Considering that many architectural academics are also practitioners, educators and ‘ordinary’ citizens, what potential contribution might be made by the academic, either individually or collectively?
Submissions are invited for papers that will contribute to thinking in the areas of SURVIVAL or PRAXIS by addressing these or other relevant questions. Clearly,
SURVIVAL and PRAXIS do overlap: submissions are also welcomed for papers that consider questions they have in common.