Politecnico di Torino
Politecnico di Torino
Politecnico di Torino
Academic Year 2013/14
History of architecture
Master of science-level of the Bologna process in Architecture Construction City - Torino
Teacher Status SSD Les Ex Lab Tut Years teaching
Pace Sergio ORARIO RICEVIMENTO O2 ICAR/18 60 0 0 0 2
SSD CFU Activities Area context
ICAR/18 6 B - Caratterizzanti Discipline storiche per l'architettura
Subject fundamentals
The course of History of Architecture has one privileged object of study: the application of the historical method and critical discourse, as developed between 19th and 21st century, to the analysis of architecture, the city and of built environment.
Two are the main goals. The first is the construction of a lexicon of keywords, which enables the understanding and interpretation of architectural and urban phenomena in modern and contemporary history. The second is the understanding of the complexity of the processes, the identity of the different actors and the multiplicity of cultural reasons (technological, economic, social, political) that have produced the architectures and cities in the West.
Expected learning outcomes
The course of Storia dell’Architettura / History of Architecture develops a dual structure of inquiry and knowledge. In the foreground are, on the one hand, the facts and, on the other, the interpretation of these facts.
First, the course focuses on a series of architectural and urban case studies, suitable to highlight some crucial themes, issues and concepts in the history of architecture. Secondly, through the analysis of written and iconographic documents, the course analyses and compares the different interpretations of these facts, as produced by a variety of social actors involved in the construction and/or reception of the built environment (architects, engineers and builders, clients and other users, critics and journalists), at different times.
Thus, at the end of the course, the students will be able to manage two essential cultural qualities, built in parallel: the analytic knowledge of the architectural and urban facts, but also the synthetic ability to distinguish the various interpretations, produced along a wide spectrum of time by a plurality of protagonists, and consequently shape their own original view.
Prerequisites / Assumed knowledge
A solid historical culture is an essential requirement. The coure will build upon the basic knowledge and skills acquired in the courses of History of Contemporary and Modern Architecture, during the bachelor’s degree. Furthermore, as the course of History of Architecture will be thoroughly held in English as for both lessons and bibliographies, a good competence in the language is strongly recommended: good listening and reading comprehension skills are indispensable.
As an essential component of the education in the humanities, the course of History of Architecture aims at fostering the students’ familiarity with the analytical, critical and speculative cultures, produced by and destined to the architectural domain.
The course will observe the interplay between architectural and urban change in six cities: New York, Chicago, Paris, Berlin, Rome, and Tokyo.
These cities will serve as observation points in order to raise critically discuss some fundamental issues of global architectural and urban history from the early 19th century to the early 21st.
The course will be organized partly through lectures and partly through seminars that will require the active participation of the students.
Delivery modes
Students will be asked to actively take part in classroom activities and debates and to give at least one public presentation of a texts or a series of texts.
The course will also require each student to research and write a final paper, consisting in a original essay on a specific building or site in one of the selected cities.
Texts, readings, handouts and other learning resources
General reference works:
Jean-Louis Cohen, The Future of Architecture Since 1889, London, Phaidon, 2012
Peter Clark (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Cities in World History, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2013

A specific bibliography will be provided and discussed during the course.
Assessment and grading criteria
The final grade will be based upon an evaluation of: a) the active participation to the course activities and the public presentation(s) given in class; b) the written paper, to be delivered not later than 15 days before the exam; c) an in-depth knowledge knowledge and understanding of the specific readings presented and commented during the course.

Further details concerning these aspects will be given during the course

Programma definitivo per l'A.A.2015/16

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Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 24 - 10129 Torino, ITALY
WCAG 2.0 (Level AA)