Architecture, Materiality and Society: Connecting Sociology by Anna-Lisa Müller, W. Reichmann

By Anna-Lisa Müller, W. Reichmann

This e-book examines the level to which the insights of STS can be utilized to examine the position of structure in and for social existence. The contributions study the query of no matter if structure and therefore materiality as an entire has corporation. The booklet additionally proposes a theoretical and methodological strategy on how you can study architecture's organisation.

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Sample text

For instance, if for some reason these artefacts are no longer questioned, the interests imbued in their design may no longer be of interest and/or be visible. The reception counter could be a case in point. Although the user we interviewed was critical of management’s decision to revert back to a more conventional design, there may be other staff members who just see this form of counter as serving its purpose and who may be unaware of the managerial changes that our critical interviewee saw the reversion to the old design as symbolizing.

To reiterate, architecture is tied to the social context, the spaces and the materiality it and its users are embedded in. As elaborated in the section on space, humans generally ascribe symbolic meanings to material objects as soon as they know, perceive or use materiality. But this ascription of meanings is inherent neither to material objects nor to architecture; it is the result of a social process taking place in a given social context. Actors in different social, historical or Werner Reichmann and Anna-Lisa Müller 19 geographical contexts ascribe different meanings to the same material object.

From left to right: the architects’ initial proposal, the serpentine; the management’s input to a redesign, and the staff’s suggestion, developed on the basis of the user participation activities 34 Architecture, Materiality and Society gesture she found more appropriate with reference to the municipality’s overall vision for the town hall project and also more in keeping with the impression that many of the municipal employees had from taking part in the user participation activities. Upon returning to the town hall building after its completion, when the ‘Citizen Service Centre’ had been functioning for a few months, the design of the reception counter was again a subject of intense debate, again at Charlotte’s initiative.

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