The 1960s and the 1970s marked a generational shift in architectural discourse at a time when the revolts inside universities condemned the academic institution as a major force behind the perpetuation of a controlling society. Focusing on the crisis and reform of higher education in Italy, The University as a Settlement Principle investigates how university design became a lens for architects to interpret a complex historical moment that was marked by the construction of an unprecedented number of new campuses worldwide.
Implicitly drawing parallels with the contemporary condition of the university under a regime of knowledge commodification, it reviews the vision proposed by architects such as Vittorio Gregotti, Giuseppe Samonà, Archizoom, Giancarlo De Carlo, and Guido Canella, among others, to challenge the university as a bureaucratic and self-contained entity, and defend, instead, the role of higher education as an agent for restructuring vast territories. Through their projects, the book discusses a most fertile and heroic moment of Italian architectural discourse and argues for a reconsideration of architecture’s obligation to question the status quo.
This work will be of interest to postgraduate researchers and academics in architectural theory and history, campus design, planning theory, and history.
Table of Contents
Introduction: University by (urban) design
Part I Beyond campus: Chronicle
Prologue 1 Another campus
1. The campus phenomenon
2. Imagining an urban Italy
3. Reform or revolution
4. Architecture or system: A parable in four episodes
Epilogue 1 End of an illusion
Part II Academic territories: Four takes
Prologue 2 The principle of concentration
5. Exemplars of order: Vittorio Gregotti, Giuseppe Samonà and academic gigantism
6. Information à la carte: Archizoom and territorial de-institutionalisation
7. Reversing the pyramid: Giancarlo De Carlo and the dilution of the university
8. The Anti-City: Guido Canella and the nomadic university
Epilogue 2 Academic instability
Conclusion: Towards academic commons
Francesco Zuddas is Senior Lecturer in Architecture at Anglia Ruskin University, UK.
"Weaving together, architecture, urbanism, and the design of higher education in Italy during the 1960s and 1970s, Francesco Zuddas’s The University as a Settlement Principle rejects the binary of "city and campus" arguing instead for an understanding of knowledge production as a territorial imperative. His tale of late-modern attempts at the reform of higher education and urban design are instructive for today’s attempts to imbricate spaces of learning within the design of the contemporary city." - Sharon Haar, University of Michigan, USA