Tales of Seduction: Architecture and Design in Literature
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Division: Parsons The New School for Design
School: School of Art and Design History and Theory
Department: Art and Design History
Course Number: PGHT 5739
Course Format: Lecture
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: No
- Art History, Theory & Criticism
Opening in 1758 with Jean-François de Bastide’s The Little House: An Architectural Seduction, and culminating during World War II with The Glass Room (2009), Simon Mawer’s work of historical fiction constructed around Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s Tugendhat House, completed in 1930, this course will use both period fiction and historical fiction to explore the role that literature plays in creating narratives for buildings, interiors, and objects as they circulate through society – and make history. Weekly readings will include selections from novels and other creative works, supplemented by primary source documents, such as treatises on architecture and design. Students will write a short piece of historical fiction focused on an object, as well as a longer research project in which they employ period fiction (in addition to more traditional primary and secondary sources) to substantiate their arguments about a specific object or interior designed between 1750 and 1950. Students will leave the course with an appreciation for literature as a viable – and vibrant – component of historical research, as well as sense of how to employ it most productively and responsibly in their own work.
Open to: All university graduate degree students.
Open to Graduate students.