Method Acts

Method Acts graphic icons

Method Acts is a series of virtual workshops focused on scholarly techniques for graduate students and emerging scholars in architectural history and adjacent fields. This series of two events will be a forum for discussing approaches to our work.

Historical methods are practices and are inherently political. The question of who gets to write history is inextricable from the politics of how they write it. The scope, subject, and mode of address, the historical evidence that is available in any given moment, and the orientation of the researcher all condition our encounters with the events and objects that we study. As architectural historians in early phases of our careers, we have the opportunity to orient our field toward broader forms of engagement.

Taking the abstract, bibliography, archive, and footnote as places where methods are imprinted, discussions will begin with 10-minute presentations by invited emerging scholars providing a concise overview of their research, their methodological frame, and a specific area where the intervention occurs: the abstract, bibliography, archive, or footnote. Following the discussions, the SAH Graduate Student Advisory Committee will moderate questions for approximately 30 minutes (with a 5-minute introduction and conclusion to the event).

Method Acts is organized by SAH Graduate Student Advisory Committee members Jia Yi Gu, Jonah Rowen, and Jessica Varner. The series is free and open to SAH members. Registration priority is given to graduate students and emerging scholars. Each program is limited to 45 participants. The series will not be recorded.

January 15 Workshop

Theme: Narrative and Documentary 
Friday, January 15, 2021
3:00–4:15 PM CST
Event hosted on Zoom
Open to SAH members (SAH membership must be active at time of event.)

This program has reached capacity. Thank you!


Charlette Caldwell

Charlette Caldwell is currently a Ph.D. student and a Provost Diversity Fellow studying the history and theory of architecture at Columbia University. Her research focuses broadly on nineteenth-century American architecture and American vernacular architectural studies. She received a bachelor’s in architecture from Syracuse University and a Master of Science in Historic Preservation from the Weitzman School of Design. Charlette is also a research fellow at Weitzman’s Center for the Preservation of Civil Rights Sites.


Pollyanna Rhee
Pollyanna Rhee is an assistant professor of landscape architecture at the University Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Her book project, Natural Attachments, presents a new history of the popular embrace of modern environmentalism by examining the role of ideas of home, community, and social order in shaping physical landscapes and expectations about environmental quality. She received her Ph.D. in history and theory of architecture from Columbia University in 2018. From 2018 to 2020 she was Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Environmental Humanities at the Illinois Program in Research in the Humanities.


Hossain Md. Shajjad is an architect and senior lecturer in BRACU, Bangladesh, and currently in a joint Ph.D. program HERITAS (heritage studies), by the UNESCO CHAIR-University of Évora and the University of Lisbon. His research interests lie in cultural heritage, human settlement, urbanism, and mapping while his current work focuses on a methodology that foresees the use of interpretative mapping to combine chronological information on the history, landscape, monuments, and cultures of a historic site.


February 26 Workshop

Theme: Ethnographic and Material 
Friday, February 26, 2021
3:00–4:15 PM CST
Event hosted on Zoom
Open to SAH members (SAH membership must be active at time of event.)

This program has reached capacity. To be placed on a waitlist, please email You will be contacted if a spot becomes available.


Macarena de la Vega
Macarena de la Vega is a Spanish architect who holds a Ph.D. in architectural history. As a postdoctoral research fellow at the Australian Centre for Architectural History, Urban and Cultural Heritage (ACAHUCH) she is undertaking the project "The Mental Life of the Architectural Historian of Australia and New Zealand," which was awarded the 2019 David Saunders Founder’s Grant. Her field of interest is the study of architectural historiography, with a focus on the recent past and the "global."


Alberto Sanchez-Sanchez
Alberto Sanchez-Sanchez is a Ph.D. candidate in architecture at University of California, Berkeley. A licensed architect in Spain, he holds a professional degree in architecture from Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, and an MS in historic preservation from Columbia University, where he studied as a Fulbright scholar. His work focuses on the transformation of rural Spain during the twentieth century, and he defends a greater integration of city and country in the assessment of modernity.



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