After Effects: Architectural Histories of the Present
CED Department of Architecture Graduate Student Conference
Friday, Nov. 9 from 6-7:30 p.m. and Saturday, Nov, 10 from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. | Wurster Hall, UC Berkeley
The College of Environmental Design's Department of Architecture and doctoral students will host this graduate student conference to study the after effects of underexamined or minor landscapes, projects and historical developments that are informed by the politics of the present.
Friday November 9, 6 p.m. | Wurster Hall, Room 270
Professor Rajagopalan Mrinalini, University of Pittsburgh
Saturday November 10, 4 p.m. | Wurster Hall, Room 104
Professor Lucia Allais, Princeton University
For full schedule and details, visit aftereffects.today.
About the Conference
Scholars have, in recent years, argued that technical networks and infrastructure operate beyond human intention. Their insights into the failed projects of modernity offer new ways of understanding built environments as mediated at the unruly intersection of culture, technique, politics and non-human agency. Their methods can also be applied beyond the realm of science and technology studies, to understand design, as both a cultural and political-economic project, as discontinuous and subject to unanticipated effects.
This conference will focus on the after effects of under examined or minor landscapes, projects and historical developments that are informed by the politics of the present. This theme seeks participants examining a variety of questions through their dissertation research, including but not exclusive to:
- How are traces of the past and visions for the future being grappled with in the architecture and urbanism of the present?
- How are conflicting ideas of identity and power enacted through built space? How can scholars complicate the legacies of colonial and modernist projects to new ends?
- What can studies of architectural and urban planning projects contribute to emerging scholarly debates on the anthropocene?
About the Speakers
Mrinalini Rajagopalan (University of Pittsburgh) is a historian of India’s built environment and is particularly interested in the impact of colonialism and nationalism on the architectural, urban, and preservation cultures of modern South Asia. Her first monograph Building Histories: The Archival and Affective Lives of Five Monuments in Modern Delhi (University of Chicago Press, 2016) traces the modern lives of five medieval monuments in India’s capital city, Delhi, and brings attention to their contested histories, unexpected uses, and ideological appropriations by state and non-state actors. This book received the Alice Davis Hitchcock Award from the Society of Architectural Historians in 2018.
Lucia Allais (Princeton School of Architecture) is an architectural historian and design critic who works on the intersection of culture, politics, and technology in the modern period, with a special focus on international institutions and global practices in the 20th century. Her first book Designs of Destruction: The making of international monuments in the 20th Century, was published by the University of Chicago Press in October 2018. This work uncovers five extraordinary projects by scholars, architects, preservationists, lawyers, and other internationalists mobilized to salvage and protect monuments of art and architecture from various destructive scenarios in the middle of the 20th Century—from the League of Nations in the 1930s, to the Allied Air Forces in World War II, the International Campaign for Nubia in the 1970s. Conceived as a prehistory of UNESCO’s 1972 World Heritage Convention, it uncovers the tacit modernism that undelay the internationalization of preservation, and shows how architecture old and new became a privileged site of cultural cooperation on the world stage.