Modernism and the Professional Architecture Journal: Reporting, Editing and Reconstructing in Post-War Europe, 1st Edition (e-Book) book cover

Modernism and the Professional Architecture Journal

Reporting, Editing and Reconstructing in Post-War Europe, 1st Edition

Edited by Torsten Schmiedeknecht, Andrew Peckham


222 pages

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Paperback: 9781138945227
pub: 2018-07-04
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pub: 2018-07-03
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The production of this book stems from two of the editors’ longstanding research interests: the representation of architecture in print media, and the complex identity of the second phase of modernism in architecture given the role it played in postwar reconstruction in Europe.

While the history of postwar reconstruction has been increasingly well covered for most European countries, research investigating postwar architectural magazines and journals across Europe – their role in the discourse and production of the built environment and particularly their inter-relationship and differing conceptions of postwar architecture – is relatively undeveloped. Modernism and the Professional Architecture Journal sounds out this territory in a new collection of essays concerning the second phase of the reception and assimilation of modernism in architecture, as it was represented in professional architecture journals during the period of postwar reconstruction (1945–1968).

Professional architecture journals are often seen as conduits of established facts and knowledge. The role mainstream publications play, however, in establishing ‘movements’, ‘trends’ or ‘debates’ tends to be undervalued. In the context of the complex undertaking of postwar reconstruction, the shortage of resources, political uncertainty and the biographical complexities of individual architects, the chapters on key European architecture journals collected here reveal how modernist architecture, and its discourse, was perceived and disseminated in different European countries.


"This is surely the first systematic survey of architectural journals produced across Europe in that vital 20-year period following the war when modernism was in vexed transit from embattled cause to contested orthodoxy. Scholarly country-by-country coverage reveals how the medium of the professional journal functioned as both a mirror and a torch, reflecting while also guiding the inextricable narratives of practice and discourse. Journalism may be but ‘the first rough draft of history’, yet this fascinating study shows what a rich and compelling draft it can be."

- John Allan, architect and writer

"During the years between 1945 and 1968 professional journals were testing grounds for institutional debates where modernist discourse has been produced and disseminated. Grounded in extensive new research, the essays in this volume by eleven international architectural scholars propose a stimulating interpretation of a medium whose role has been hitherto underestimated. Examining the interferences between journals, design practice and the tasks of reconstruction, the book shows us how professional architecture journals, their owners, editors, contributors and designers shaped architectural culture in the postwar decades."

– Ákos Moravánszky, Professor Emeritus, ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Table of Contents

Introduction Torsten Schmiedeknecht and Andrew Peckham 1. Swiss Journals 1940–1965: mirroring the difficult departure into modernity Christoph Allenspach 2. Postwar Editorial Conversations in Germany: Baumeister and Baukunst und Werkform Torsten Schmiedeknecht 3. The Free Bird and Its Cages: Dutch architectural journals in the first decade after the Second World War Herman van Bergeijk 4. Nation Building: Sweden's modernisation and the autonomy of the profession Claes Caldenby 5. Visual Sensibility and the Search for Form: the Architectural Review in postwar Britain Andrew Higgott 6. Axe or Mirror? Architectural journals in postwar Hungary András Ferkai 7. Periodicals and the Return to Modernity after the Spanish Civil War: Arquitectura, Hogar y Architectura and Nueva Forma Ana Esteban Maluenda 8. The Greek Vision of Postwar Modernity Panayotis Tournikiotis 9. Architecture d'aujord'hui, the André Bloc years Nicholas Bullock 10. Against the Contingencies of Italian Society: issues of historical continuity and doscontinuity in Italy's postwar architectural periodicals Paolo Scrivano 11. The After-Life of the Architectural Journal Andrew Peckham

About the Editors

Torsten Schmiedeknecht teaches design, history and theory at the School of Architecture, University of Liverpool, UK. His research interests include the representation of architecture in print media; rationalism in architecture; and architectural competitions. He is the co-editor of The Rationalist Reader, Rationalist Traces, An Architect’s Guide to Fame and Fame and Architecture. He is currently working on an RIBA-funded project about the representation of (modern) architecture in children’s literature.

Andrew Peckham teaches architecture at the University of Westminster, UK. He has co-edited, with Hannah Lewi, a series of annual anthology issues of The Journal of Architecture (2016–2018) and is currently editing a book on teaching ‘studio’: The Intrinsic and Extrinsic City. His Architecture and its Imprint is due for publication in 2018.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
ARCHITECTURE / History / Contemporary (1945-)