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Designs on the Public Cover

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Designs on the Public

The Private Lives of New York’s Public Spaces

Kristine F. Miller

New York City is home to some of the most recognizable places in the world. As familiar as the sight of New Year’s Eve in Times Square or a protest in front of City Hall may be to us, do we understand who controls what happens there? Kristine Miller delves into six of New York’s most important public spaces to trace how design influences their complicated lives. 


Miller chronicles controversies in the histories of New York locations including Times Square, Trump Tower, the IBM Atrium, and Sony Plaza. The story of each location reveals that public space is not a concrete or fixed reality, but rather a constantly changing situation open to the forces of law, corporations, bureaucracy, and government. The qualities of public spaces we consider essential, including accessibility, public ownership, and ties to democratic life, are, at best, temporary conditions and often completely absent.


Design is, in Miller’s view, complicit in regulation of public spaces in New York City to exclude undesirables, restrict activities, and privilege commercial interests, and in this work she shows how design can reactivate public space and public life.


Kristine F. Miller is associate professor of landscape architecture at the University of Minnesota.

Detached America Cover

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Detached America

Building Houses in Postwar Suburbia

James A. Jacobs

Discipline Of Architecture Cover

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Discipline Of Architecture

Andrzej Piotrowski

In the vast literature on architectural theory and practice, the ways in which architectural knowledge is actually taught, debated, and understood are too often ignored. The essays collected in this groundbreaking volume address the current state of architecture as an academic and professional discipline. The issues considered range from the form and content of architectural education to the architect’s social and environmental obligations and the emergence of a new generation of architects. Often critical of the current paradigm, these essays offer a provocative challenge to accepted assumptions about the production, dissemination, and reception of architectural knowledge. Contributors: Sherry Ahrentzen, U of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; Stanford Anderson, MIT; Carol Burns, Harvard U; Russell Ellis, UC Berkeley; Thomas Fisher, U of Minnesota; Linda Groat, U of Michigan; Kay Bea Jones, Ohio State U; David Leatherbarrow, U of Pennsylvania; A. G. Krishna Menon, TVB School of Habitat Studies, India; Garth Rockcastle, U of Minnesota; Michael Stanton, American U, Beirut; Sharon E. Sutton, U of Washington; David J. T. Vanderburgh, Université Catholique de Louvain, Belgium; and Donald Watson, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Drawing Boundaries Cover

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Drawing Boundaries

Architectural Images in Qing China

Anita Chung

Qing China (1644–1912) witnessed a resurgence in architectural painting, a traditional subject category known as jiehua, or boundary painting. Drawing Boundaries concerns itself with the symbolic implications of this impressive and little studied reflorescence. Beginning with a concise and well-illustrated history of the evolution of the tradition, this exciting new study reveals how these images were deployed in the Manchu (Qing) imperial court to define political, social, or cultural boundaries. Characterized by grand conception and regal splendor, the paintings served to enhance the imperial authority of rulers and, to a segment of the elite, to advertise social status. Drawing Boundaries thus speaks to both issues of painting and architectural style and the discourse of powerful cultural forms. In addition to the analysis of how the style of image construction suggests these political and social motivations, the book identifies another aspect of traditional architectural representation unique to the Qing: the use of architectural representation to render form and space. Anita Chung makes the fascinating observation that these renderings create an overwhelming sense of “being there,” a characteristic, she argues, that underscores the Qing concern for the substance of things—a sensibility toward the physical world characteristic of the period and emblematic of a new worldview.

Droit de cité pour le patrimoine Cover

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Droit de cité pour le patrimoine

Jean-Michel Leniaud

La conservation du patrimoine résulte de facteurs complexes, non seulement de choix scientifiques et d’intérêts politiques ou financiers, mais aussi de positions mémorielles, voire d’idéologies. Dans une trentaine de textes ici rassemblés, Jean-Michel Leniaud expose les enjeux de l’habitus patrimonial qui s’est composé pour que, dans la cité, une place soit faite à l’héritage.

Enclaves of America Cover

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Enclaves of America

The Rhetoric of American Political Architecture Abroad, 1900-1965

Ron Theodore Robin

Whether determining the style of its embassies or the design of overseas cemeteries for Americans killed in battle, the U.S. government in its rise to global leadership greatly valued architectural symbols as a way of conveying its power abroad. In order to explain the political significance of American monuments on foreign soil, this illustrated book explores the efforts made by the United States from 1900 to 1965 to enhance its image as a military and economic force with displays of artistic achievement.

Originally published in 1996.

The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

Erased from Space and Consciousness Cover

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Erased from Space and Consciousness

Israel and the Depopulated Palestinian Villages of 1948

Foreword by Oren Yiftachel. Noga Kadman

Hundreds of Palestinian villages were left empty across Israel when their residents became refugees after the 1948 war, their lands and property confiscated. Most of the villages were razed by the new State of Israel, but in dozens of others, communities of Jews were settled—many refugees in their own right. The state embarked on a systematic effort of renaming and remaking the landscape, and the Arab presence was all but erased from official maps and histories. Israelis are familiar with the ruins, terraces, and orchards that mark these sites today—almost half are located within tourist areas or national parks—but public descriptions rarely acknowledge that Arab communities existed there within living memory or describe how they came to be depopulated. Using official archives, kibbutz publications, and visits to the former village sites, Noga Kadman has reconstructed this history of erasure for all 418 depopulated villages.

Essay on Gardens Cover

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Essay on Gardens

A Chapter in the French Picturesque

By Claude-Henri Watelet. Edited and translated by Samuel Danon. Introduction by Joseph Disponzio

Published in 1774, Essay on Gardens is one of the earliest texts showing the progressive shift in French taste from the classical model of the gardens at Versailles to the picturesque or natural style of garden design in the late eighteenth century. In this formulation of his ideas concerning landscape, Claude-Henri Watelet describes an ideal farm and also his own very real garden, Moulin Joli, near Paris. He advances the theory that the useful and the pleasurable must be combined in the planning, preservation, and decoration of the land by offering a relatively novel design that uses experimental methods to create a comfortable estate. The result is a horticultural and ecological laboratory that includes a residence, a farm, stables, a dairy, an apiary, a mill, walks, vistas, flower beds, an area reserved for medicinal plants, decorative statues, a medical laboratory, and even a small infirmary for ailing members of the community.

Given the wide scholarly interest in the field of garden design and its history, this first English edition of Watelet's small but influential book will interest historians of landscape design as well as students of the history of architecture. Joseph Disponzio's informative introduction to Samuel Danon's masterful translation situates the Essay on Gardens within the framework of other landscape and garden treatises of the late eighteenth century.

Although the original text was not illustrated, this edition includes a selection of charming drawings and etchings of Moulin Joli by Watelet himself, Hubert Robert, and others.

The Fabric of Space Cover

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The Fabric of Space

Water, Modernity, and the Urban Imagination

Matthew Gandy

Water lies at the intersection of landscape and infrastructure, crossing between visible and invisible domains of urban space, in the tanks and buckets of the global South and the vast subterranean technological networks of the global North. In this book, Matthew Gandy considers the cultural and material significance of water through the experiences of six cities: Paris, Berlin, Lagos, Mumbai, Los Angeles, and London. Tracing the evolving relationships among modernity, nature, and the urban imagination, from different vantage points and through different periods, Gandy uses water as a lens through which to observe both the ambiguities and the limits of nature as conventionally understood. Gandy begins with the Parisian sewers of the nineteenth century, captured in the photographs of Nadar, and the reconstruction of subterranean Paris. He moves on to Weimar-era Berlin and its protection of public access to lakes for swimming, the culmination of efforts to reconnect the city with nature. He considers the threat of malaria in Lagos, where changing geopolitical circumstances led to large-scale swamp drainage in the 1940s. He shows how the dysfunctional water infrastructure of Mumbai offers a vivid expression of persistent social inequality in a postcolonial city. He explores the incongruous concrete landscapes of the Los Angeles River. Finally, Gandy uses the fictional scenario of a partially submerged London as the starting point for an investigation of the actual hydrological threats facing that city.

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