1st Edition

The Visibility of Modernization in Architecture A Debate

Edited By Gevork Hartoonian Copyright 2023
    276 Pages 46 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This edited collection explores the visibility of modernization in architecture produced in different capitalist regions across the world and provides readers with a historico-theoretical and historico-geographical discussion.

    Focusing on a particular building type, an influential architect’s work, as well as relevant texts and documents, each chapter addresses the many facets of "delay" which are central to the problematization of capitalism’s progressive dissemination of technological and aesthetic regimes of modernism. This collection underlines the centrality of temporality for a critical understanding of colonialism, modernism, and capitalism. The book is primarily concerned with the historical timeline, the tangential point when a nation enters modernization processes. In exploring modernism in diverse regions such as East Asia, Pacific, Eastern Europe, and Iran, each chapter addresses the historiographic and architectonic unfolding of modernization beyond the western hemisphere. 

    The exploration of these diverse case-studies will be of interest to students of architecture and researchers working on the collision of temporalities and the subject's critical importance for different country’s built-environments.

    List of Contributors



    Gevork Hartoonian


    Part I: Historico-theoretical Paths


    1          Empire: Architecture and Totality

                Gevork Hartoonian


    2          The Architecture of Power, or the Power of Architects

                Jean-Louis Cohen


    3          Time’s Envelope: City/Capital/Chronotope

                Harry Harootunian


    4          Challenging Eurocentrism in Architectural Historiographies

                Marianna Charitonidou


    Part II: Historico-geographic Practices


    5          Second Time as Farce: Modern Architecture in Khrushchev’s USSR

                Ross Wolfe


    6          Different Priorities: Yugoslavian and Romanian Architects In and Out

                Mirjana Lozanovska and Carmen Popescu


    7          The Museum of Contemporary Art in Belgrade: Aesthetics and Cultural Technology

                Nikolina Bobic


    8          We Need to Talk about Class in Architecture

                Harry Margalit


    9          Disjunctions in New Zealand Architecture

                Paul Walker


    10       Assembling Chinese Modernism

               Duanfang Lu


    11       Korean Architecture, c. 2020: Group 4.3 and Four Important Trends

              Hyu-Tae Jung and Junghyun Park


    12       Shahyad Tower: Two Tendencies in One Ideological Symbol

               Motehareh Danaeifar


    13       Oil, Utopia, and the Architecture of the Off-Modern: The Anglo-Iranian Oil Company

               Planning in 1930s Iran

    Rahmatollah Amirjani



    Gevork Hartoonian is Emeritus Professor of architectural history at the University of Canberra, Australia, and holds a Ph. D from the University of Pennsylvania, USA. He has taught in American universities, including Pratt Institute and Columbia University, NYC. Hartoonian is most recently the author of Towards a Critique of Architecture’s Contemporaneity: 4 Essays (Routledge 2023), Reading Kenneth Frampton: A Commentary on Modern Architecture 1980 (Anthem Press 2022), and Time, History and Architecture: essays on critical historiography (Routledge 2020/2018). His previous publications include, among others, Architecture and Spectacle: a critique (Routledge, 2016/2012) and The Mental Life of the Architectural Historian (2013). The Korean and Thai edition of his Ontology of Construction (Cambridge University Press, 1994) was published in 2010 and 2017.