Architectural history, unlike other branches of specialised history, is still subject to a debate about its relevance to contemporary practice. The place of history – as opposed to theory – in schools of architecture periodically comes under question. The aim of this seminar is to inform students of these discussions and involve them in a debate: why study history? The seminar will be centred around a series of readings, with each session commencing with a short talk followed by discussion of the text and debate.
This course will develop a range of critical and intellectual skills by presenting students with the task of reading, analysing and debating texts in a group setting. It will increase students' awareness of historical and current debates on the place of history in the architectural education and the approaches to the study and understanding of buildings and landscapes from the past. The seminars will equip students with a range of approaches to the past in its material and conceptual forms, which they can then adopt for their academic and professional work through the process of critical reflection.