Call for Papers: ‘The AHRA Review of Books’. Architecture & Culture Vol. 8, Issue 1 (Spring 2020)

Editors: Diana Periton and Stephen Walker

When Architecture & Culture, the Journal of the Architectural Humanities Research Association (AHRA), was first launched in November 2013, the intention was to include book reviews.  Architecture & Culture has a designated editor for book reviews, and it has sporadically published essays that review books when those essays concern the theme of a particular journal issue. What Architecture & Culture have not done is to dedicate a regular section of the journal to book reviews, or to solicit new books from publishers (who send them, regardless – and we remain grateful for all received).

Here, the editors broach the issue of book reviews by foregrounding the suggestion that to review is more than to formulate a critique of something; it is “to look at or to examine again … to look back upon” (Collins English Dictionary).  Our interest is to re-view the book review, to study its different roles and explore its possibilities for architecture’s various modes of production, dissemination and reflection.

Architecture & Culture seeks inquiries into one or more of the following:

  • the deliberate return to a book, whether a ‘key text’ or a book previously overlooked
  • the re-view of a review, or the conversation between reviews
  • the practice of reviewing and its significance for the reviewer, the reviewed, and for architectural practice
  • the review of books not only by architects or explicitly about architecture, but from other disciplines – books that, through review, are brought into architecture’s orbit
  • the review not only of a book’s text or its visual content of, but more broadly of what it is that a book can do and how within architecture’s different kinds of practice

Submissions may be essays, short or long, or they may respond to books in alternative ways – through poems, for instance, or conversations, blogs, or other reflective constructions.  They may focus on buildings that consider books, where the building itself constitutes a book review.  They may be predominantly verbal, or alternatively visual or aural.  Our intention is to look back and to speculate upon the future of the role of the book in and through architecture, not to assume that “this will kill that”, as Victor Hugo suggested of book versus building, but to consider the way in which the review of books is caught up in architecture’s culture, and inspires, conspires and collaborates with architecture’s various productions and practices.

The full call for papers with more information for the authors is available here.

Deadline for submissions:  17 June 2019.

Issue publication (online and print): March 2020.

If you have any queries, please contact Diana Periton dp_cs@mac.com and Stephen Walker s.j.walker@manchester.ac.uk

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