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Utopia and the Dirty Secret of Architecture

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journal contribution
posted on 21.05.2017, 13:44 by Craig B Johnson
In the theorization of Utopia in critical theory two paths of development have been widely acknowledged. On the one hand there is the Utopian plan, or project, identified by Fredric Jameson (among others) as a sweeping design that claims to solve and negate a social and political situation, in favour of an actually built, and better one. On the other hand, we find the Utopian impulse, a markedly different affair, having to do not with building a brand new society or revolution, but with a displaced, striving desire or "wish" to be something else under limited conditions, and a hint at a different future or unresolved present, an idea Jameson borrows from Ernst Bloch. This paper is invested in both varieties, from the already complicated and complicating perspective of architecture.


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