- Modernism to Postmodernism in architecture- a genesis. Ill...
Modernism to Postmodernism in architecture- a genesis. Illustrate your essay with specific examples.
Postmodernism implies 'beyond modernism' or 'after modernism'
and therefore should be understood only in the context of that
which preceded it. Postmodernism emerged when people could no
longer accept the earlier universally held beliefs of progress ad
defined by science and rationality, a world view prevalent since
the Enlightenment. It was expressed, "with incredulity towards our
cultural meta-narratives." (Shawver, 2007)
The Genesis for Change
The period of prosperity after the Second World War was also a
period of cultural and intellectual disillusionment. The promise of
an ideal society, of a utopian future, believed in by the many
manifestos that emerged between the wars went unrealized. The world
was not necessarily a better place just a more confused one.
Worldviews governed by rationalism and sciences were pitted against
the realities of corporate machinations, political posturing and
Critics like Kenneth Frampton have systematically disapproved of
the icons of postmodernism, although acknowledging that it was "an
understandable reaction to the pressures of societal
modernization." Postmodern architecture has been derided as
pastiche and kitsch and has remained to many a stylistic
phenomenon, a "conscious ruination of style and cannibalization of
architectural form" where architecture was "a package deal arranged
by the builder developer that determines the carcass (of the built
form)" (Frampton 1992, p. 306-307).
In conclusion then, postmodernism does not replace modernist
meta-narratives with other meta-narratives (Shawver, 2007).
Frampton himself offers an alternative- Critical regionalism, whose
architecture "stresses the site specific and yet refuses to abandon
the emancipatory and progressive aspects of the modern
architectural legacy while distancing from the naïve utopianism,
and is opposed to the sentimental simulation of the local
vernacular. (Frampton 1992, p. 327). Thus, by discarding "grand
narratives" and focusing on specific local goals, postmodernism
offers a way to theorize local situations as fluid and
unpredictable, though influenced by global trends (Klages