ARCHITECTURE AND RACE IN DESIGN
THE NEW SCHOOL/ Department of Architecture
Instructor: Charles Davis; Tel: (215) 207-1770;
email: firstname.lastname@example.org; Class Time: (T) 3:00-5:30pm;
Office hours: by appointment
Description: The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the
ways that architecture and race have been formulated in architectural
history, architectural theory and architectural form. Towards that end,
the class will survey the following oppositional discourses in
(1) SOCIAL HISTORIES OF ARCHITECTURE analyze architecture for its
role in visualizing the social dynamics of race and class. As the city
develops over time, architecture provides a public record of social
conditions that normally resist formalization. Segregation,
gentrification, social housing and place theory are key terms in this
(2) POLITICAL METAPHORS IN ARCHITECTURE locate the ways that
architecture operates within political frameworks. Because radical
black politics and civil rights are symptomatic of broader democratic
ideals, they have systematically been translated in ‘liberal’ and ‘neo-
liberal’ architectural processes of representation.
(3) BIOLOGICAL AND LINGUISTIC CONSTRUCTIONS OF RACE reflect a
contemporary interest in the roots of architectural formalism. This
research analyzes architectural theory for its ‘structural’ conceptions of
race, presenting these frameworks as inherent elements of formalist
Fig. 1. An original countenance that will speak sensibility,
timidity, perspicuity, wit, and imagination. Not to be
numbered among the strong, bold, unshaken, and
enterprising; but very considerate, cautious to timidity.
Fig. 2. A man of business. Undoubtedly possessed of
talents, punctual honest, love of order, and deliberation.
An acute inspector of men; a calm, dry, determined
judge. To the middle of the mouth is an advancing trait,
which speaks superiority in common affairs.
Fig. 3. A good head-Cannot be mistaken, not even in
shade. Conceal the under part and Leave only the nose
and forehead visible and signs of attention, love of order
and certainty are apparent. The forehead, altogether, is
too perpendicular for a productive, mind.
Fig. 4. The forehead is not so entirely exact and pure as
to discover the whole capacity of his understanding. The
harmony of the whole, especially the nose, mouth, and
chin, denote a mind of extraordinary observation,
research, and analysis.
Fig. 5. A noble forehead, a miracle of purity, the love of
order, I might say, the love of light. Such the nose, such
Fig. 6. Much is to be learnt from this shade. Takes little,
gives much; this is particularly conspicuous in the too
round outline of the lips, which is most defective. The
most delicate lines have either not been remarked, or cut
away. The upper part of the forehead is, also, something
curtailed; otherwise this countenance is refined, discreet,
capable of talents, taste, wit, and moralsquot;.