This article was written in quite an enthusiastic mood at a time when the first movement of architectural research, the American group 'Built Form and Culture' centring around Amos Rapoport, began to consolidate itself institutionally. In this context, the text has already become a small piece of a very particular point in history. Most of the thoughts expressed in it are still relevant. This is the reason for reprinting the article here in its original version, that is, just as it appeared in German in UMRISS (1987/1), the Viennese journal for architecture and design. The developments outlined at the time have by far exceeded all expectations: approximately 2000 persons worldwide are now active in this field of research. The School of Architecture at the University of California at Berkeley has become its leading centre, offering courses, editing several regular publications, and organizing an international symposium every other year. A subsequent article of this series will focus on these very recent developments in architectural anthropology.

Evidently, the many famous constructions 'designed' only by engineers, particularly bridges (e.g. those by Maillart), should be mentioned here. In congruence with the functional aesthetics of architecture, they are considered as of aesthetic value and beauty.

The fact that this implies different views is discussed by this book in the following article on Wittkower.

In ethnology this Eurocentric fixation on an 'artist-art-schema’ is particularly grotesque. A few years ago, the art journal 'art' published an article on Africa’s first ingenious artist. It reported on a carver of cult statues who had originally been deeply rooted in his ancestral traditions. By chance he had met a Christian missionary who instructed him in the art of stone masonry (report in the populart German journal 'art').

see Udo Kultermann (1966, 1990, 1993) 'The history of art history'.

Syncretism of CIAM, brutalism, 'structuralism' of engineers, informal architecture, historicism, utopias, architectural programs of the extraparliamentary left.

To overcome the lack of orientation. Comments regarding the Conference on Architecture, Baden. By D. Garbrecht, 'Tages-Anzeiger, Zurich 6.5.1986

From a sociological viewpoint too, it is clear that North America is more apt not to leave architecture exclusively to the historian of art but to place the theory of architecture and urban design into new horizons of interdisciplinary research. The fact that in the United States a multitude of cultures and races live so close together implies intercultural frictions in this American house. Consequently there is a vital interest in research of this sort. Many contributions clearly dealt with research into solutions to these conflicts. European cities too, will, in the face of increasing international communication, soon be confronted with similar problems, as the pressure of former colonies on cities like London, Paris, and Amsterdam undeniably shows. Furthermore, the development of types of construction suitable for Third–World countries, such as clay architecture, should be noted here.

At the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee (Amos Rapoport), at the University of Utah, Salt Lake City (Irwin Altman), at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia (Dept. of Landscape Architecture: Seta Low), at the University of Washington, Seattle (Labelle Prussin). Remarkable are also the contextual-analytical studies (intercultural research with regard to the significance of landscape) of the geographical Institute at Syracuse University (James Duncan) and research done by the 'International/Intercultural Centre for Built Environment', San Francisco (David Stea) on the problems of housing and settlement in the Third and Fourth World.

See bibliography: Univ. of Kansas 1984:2

The faculty for the Built Form and Culture graduate option includes 6 professors and associate professors (J. William Carswell, Barry Newton, Victor Papanek, David G. Saile, Kent F. Spreckelmeyer and Harris Stone) and 10 frequently collaborating specialists in various disciplines. Teaching takes place in spring and autumn terms. The program provides 36 hours. 14 hours are devoted to compulsory basic training, 7 hours to a specific project or a thesis, and another 15 hours are optional: they are chosen from a list of recommended courses in consultation with the Graduate Advisor. Compulsory are lectures, workshops and a selected reading list focusing on 'Built Form and Culture' (8 hrs), 'Analogous Thinking in Design' (3), and 'Theory of Urban Design' (3). The optional courses provide a recommended program which offers the choice of complementary studies in various areas: 'cultures' (Japan, Islam), 'linguistics' or 'semiotics', or, for example, courses such as 'Design for Developing Countries', 'Buildings as Cultural Artifacts', 'Architectural Criticism', 'Evaluation of the Built Environment', 'Architect's Role in Society', 'Design Ethics', 'Urban Social Structure', and 'Comparative Architectural Ideologies'. A very interesting and promising program! Additionally on offer are courses (6 hrs.) in anthropology, philosophy, cultural geography, which can be attended on a voluntary basis. Students from Europe and Japan study there, which goes to prove that this still is a unique program.

See bibliography : Univ. of Kansas 1986 (Introduction)

"The structuring principles of architectural symbolization are - whatever the massive literature ostensibly devoted to the topic may claim - unknown ..." This is wrong. Recently art historians have successfully employed semiotic methods. Bätschmann (1982), for instance, analyzed Poussin's paintings with regard to historical 'discourses' or painted 'stories' which can be 'read' in the context of persons acting within the hierarchy of architectural form. A very promising line in art historical studies!

Studies of Egenter (1980, 1982) show this to be a very important question which can only be answered within a wide cultural anthropological framework.

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