Download 194X: Architecture, Planning, and Consumer Culture on the by Andrew M. Shanken PDF

By Andrew M. Shanken

During the second one international conflict, American structure used to be in a nation of obstacle. The rationing of establishing fabrics and regulations on nonmilitary development endured the privations that the career had persisted in the course of the nice melancholy. while, the dramatic occasions of the Nineteen Thirties and Forties led many architects to think that their profession—and society itself—would suffer a profound shift as soon as the conflict ended, with deepest commissions giving strategy to centrally deliberate initiatives. The journal Architectural Forum coined the time period “194X” to encapsulate this wartime imaginative and prescient of postwar structure and urbanism.

In a big research of yank structure in the course of global conflict II, Andrew M. Shanken specializes in the tradition of anticipation that arose during this interval, as out-of-work architects became their energies from the equipped to the unbuilt, redefining themselves as planners and developing unique designs to excite the general public approximately postwar structure. Shanken recasts the wartime period as a crucible for the intermingling of modernist structure and patron culture.

hard the pervasive concept that company capitalism corrupted the idealism of modernist structure within the postwar period, 194X exhibits in its place that architecture’s wartime partnership with company American was once based on shared anxieties and beliefs. enterprise and structure have been introduced jointly in cutting edge methods, as proven by way of Shanken’s persuasive examining of journal ads for Revere Copper and Brass, U.S. Gypsum, basic electrical, and different businesses that prominently featured the paintings of best revolutionary architects, together with Louis I. Kahn, Eero Saarinen, and Walter Gropius.

even though the unforeseen prosperity of the postwar period made the structure of 194X out of date prior to it may be outfitted and ended in its exclusion from the tale of twentieth-century American structure, Shanken makes transparent that its anticipatory rhetoric and designs performed a very important position within the frequent acceptance

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Mitchell, the Urban Section set out 22 The Culture of Planning to create demonstrations of urban planning as models for the rest of the country and to distill their experience into a simple pamphlet on progressive planning for the lay public. Mitchell, a planner who had worked for the Federal Home Loan Bank Board and the Chicago City Planning Commission, and Edmund Bacon, both of whom would soon come into contact with Louis I. 28 These projects were to serve as regional models for comprehensive planning in which local organizations worked with NRPB agents to fashion long-term master plans for their town.

Where one might expect the label “Corpus Christi 1950,” instead the most prominent text reads “Employment 1950,” an appeal to continued fears of a return to depression (and unemployment) after the war. This would have resonated strongly with Americans scarcely four years removed from the Great Depression. 52 Government-induced full employment, some economists theorized, would forestall a postwar depression much in the way that the war ended the Depression by putting every able-bodied person to work.

Two overlapping forms of planning came into play, both rife with ambiguities. The planning that leads to overcentralization belonged to the established technical fields of industrial, social, and economic planning, bound together by national planning. 16 History, the authors argued, bore out the NRB’s claims that Americans were planners. ”17 While this system had been unstated, Americans had been planning under a different name since the nation’s beginnings. ”18 It likened the Constitutional Convention to a “largescale planning board” and Hamilton’s “Report on Manufactures” of 1791 to the bureau’s own work in coordinating national resources.

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