Imagining the Future of PLATFORM

SAH 2021 Virtual Conference

Imagining the Future of PLATFORM
Tuesday, May 18, 2021
12:00–1:30 PM CDT


The editors of PLATFORM will host a roundtable to discuss how architectural historians, critics, designers, citizens may critically engage with global cultures and politics of space through a public-humanities approach to writing: in particular, short-form pieces oriented to the general public. We begin with the premise that architecture—broadly speaking—is too important for us to confine discourse to academics and building professions, and that there is no universal reference point by which to measure critical excellence. The roundtable will be organized around three points of discussion: (1) the art and rigor of short-form writing; how do we envision its utility and how this may be improved? (2) engagement across disciplines and professions that at present operate in relative isolation; how may we break through professional and disciplinary silos and share a forum for engagement? (3) how do we reach a broad audience; what does it mean to create a forum for discussion that is inclusive whether by making space for those located in diverse parts of the world, limiting jargon, or writing in languages other than English? In view of the current pandemic and political events—the protests against colonialism and racism that have rippled across the world in the aftermath of the George Floyd protests—we are particularly interested in what our readers consider to be useful and important in reimagining the scope of architectural history and critique. We see the roundtable as an open forum for discussion and debate, moderated by PLATFORM editors. The roundtable discussion will serve as a blueprint for improving PLATFORM’s function as a digital public humanities forum for architectural engagement. 


Swati Chattopadhyay
Marta Gutman
Zeynep Kezer
Matthew Gordon Lasner
Kishwar Rizvi


SAH thanks The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation
for its operating support.
Society of Architectural Historians
1365 N. Astor Street
Chicago, Illinois 60610