Monism and Pluralism in the Philosophy of Architecture, by Paul Guyer

The history of modern aesthetics has been marked by a tension between a monistic, essentially cognitivist or intellectualist view of the importance of aesthetic experience, and more pluralistic views, which allow room for the free play of emotions and imagination as well as for the possibility of knowledge through art. Architecture would seem to be…

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Re-making the Matterhorn, by Andrew Ballantyne

This paper is concerned with the cultural appropriation of landscape, and uses the example of the Matterhorn to show how a natural formation can become a cultural entity, and how the patterns of thought that are invested in it can be invested equally in built works. The examples of appropriation move from Michael Frayn’s treatment…

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The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: an ethico-aesthetic understanding of architecture and environment, by Fran Speed

Within the specialised area of architectural discourse aesthetic concerns still tend to be viewed as concern for the formal, visual or scenic appearance of buildings and landscape. Informed environmental aestheticians contest this limited view by arguing that aesthetic appreciation involves a contextually ‘thick’ kind of information, that is to say, one that involves human experience in its…

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Perfectionism and the Built Environment, by Rita Risser

Perfectionism is the view that there are objectively better and worse ways for humans to live. Further, we ought to identify these objective goods and implement them in bringing about the best life for humans. Perfectionism is generally constructive. However, it is also criticized for being utopian and at times paternalistic. I argue that despite its flaws,…

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Ethics Versus Aesthetics: Stanley Tigerman, by Emmanuel Petit

One of the intellectual stimuli of architectural postmodernism was the interest in the notion of the “other”; the attentiveness to, and inclusiveness of “externalities” to the modernist, aesthetic credo generated a new culture of dialogue and ethics in architecture. I will discuss how postmodern Chicago architect Stanley Tigerman sought to reintroduce the factor of human interaction into…

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Kant on Dwelling, by David Wang

This essay derives an explication of “dwelling” from Kant’s Critical Philosophy, drawing from The Critique of Judgment (1790), but also calling on the critiques of Pure Reason (1781) and Practical Reason (1788). Here is the reason why this effort is needful: Since the 1970s “dwelling” has emerged as an important topic in the architectural literature. Why…

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Foundations of Value in Architecture: reductive or not?, by Stefan Koller

The talk queries the proper formation of an architecture ethics. I start out by asking what should motivate such an ethics, and relate (this to) my own experiences when working on the renovation of House 21 of the Isar Amper campus outside Munich, a psychiatric “forensic” clinic. Extrapolating from those experiences, I go towards broader…

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