Gottfried Semper and the Problem of Historicism

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Overview

Using key texts by the German architect and theorist Gottfried Semper, Mari Hvattum offers a reinterpretation of historicism, viewed as a philosophical outlook as well as an architectural problem. Hvattum focuses on Semper's two major concerns: an understanding of the ontological significance of art and architecture, and their rendering as objects of scientific investigation and prediction. She uses Semper's thought as a means to address the inherent problems of historicist thought and its continued influence on modern architectural discourse.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'It is a compelling thesis, well argues, and ... very well written.' Architects Journal

'It is sophisticated, succinct, and crisply written. A splendid achievement.' Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521821636
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 9/30/2003
  • Pages: 274
  • Product dimensions: 6.85 (w) x 9.72 (h) x 0.91 (d)

Table of Contents

Part I. Towards a Poetics of Architecture: 1. The cult of origins; 2. The doctrine of imitation; 3. Semper and the poetic of architecture; Part II. Practical Aesthetics: 4. Semper and practical aesthetics; 5. The comparative method; 6. Towards a method of inventing; Part III. The Aporias of Historicism: 7. Semper and the 'Style of Our Time'; 8. History and historicism; 9. Between poetics and practical aesthetics.

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