1st Edition

Writing Architecture in Modern Italy Narratives, Historiography, and Myths

By Daria Ricchi Copyright 2021
    166 Pages 33 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    166 Pages 33 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

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    Writing Architecture in Modern Italy tells the history of an intellectual group connected to the small but influential Italian Einaudi publishing house between the 1930s and the 1950s. It concentrates on a diverse group of individuals, including Bruno Zevi, an architectural historian and politician; Giulio Carlo Argan, an art historian; Italo Calvino, a fiction writer; Giulio Einaudi, a publisher; and Elio Vittorini and Cesare Pavese, both writers and translators.

    Linking architectural history and historiography within a broader history of ideas, this book proposes four different methods of writing history, defining historiographical genres, modes, and tones of writing that can be applied to history writing to analyze political and social moments in time. It identifies four writing genres: myths, chronicles, history, and fiction, which became accepted as forms of multiple postmodern historical stories after 1957.

    An important contribution to the architectural debate, Writing Architecture in Modern Italy will appeal to those interested in the history of architecture, history of ideas, and architectural education.

    Foreword    Preface     Acknowledgments    Introduction    Chapter 1: Americana – Origins, Myths, and the Prehistoric Myth of a New World    Chapter 2: From Building Interiors to Real Estate: Italo Calvino’s Urban Fictive Chronicles    Chapter 3: From Chronicles to Storia: the Transition and Attempted Integration of Chronicles into History    Chapter 4: Officina Einaudi. The Stories behind the History of a Publishing House    Chapter 5: Storia 'quasi una fantasia': Giulio Carlo Argan and the Fictive in Historical Writing    Conclusion: Meta-History and the New Historiographical Babel


    Daria Ricchi is an architectural historian and writer. She holds a PhD from Princeton University, School of Architecture. She is a researcher at Oxford Brookes University and part-time tutor at Oxford University.