Taubman College

Course List

Term Winter 2012
Class ARCH 603
Class Title The Construction of Walter Benjamin’s Arcades Project
Description The seminar will examine the construction – a term that will be read in the broadest terms – of Walter’s Benjamin’s Das Passagen-Werk, which was first assembled in the fifth volume of his Gesammelte Schriften, and which is comprised of research that Benjamin conducted for over thirteen years on the subject of the Paris arcades. For Benjamin, the arcades are the most consequential architectural expression of the 19th century, not least for their connection to the various cultural phenomena through which the transition to modernity unfolds.

The goals of the seminar include: locating the intellectual contribution of Benjamin to architecture and urban planning history; examining, in detail, the construction and composition of his project; exploring the influence of this project on his contemporaries, as well as subsequent architecture histories and theories; tracing the intellectual trajectory of materialist history as it is manifest in his project; and, finally, developing contemporary adaptations, amplifications, and potential theoretical compliments to the project. Our key objective for the course is to read Benjamin as a contemporary thinker, whose project suggests the possibility for articulating positions of conviction in relation to current ‘constructions of life’ and their attendant architectural, cultural, and technological articulations.*
Prereq none entered yet
Crosslist none
Required No
Elective Yes
Selective Yes
Meets Tuesdays 1:00-4:00pm 2227 A&AB
Credits 3
Faculty Etienne Turpin
Syllabus Arch603_Turpin_Winter12.pdf