Shop Costumes Learn more nav_sap_plcc_6M_fly_beacon $5 Albums All-New Fire TV Stick with Voice Remote Grocery Introducing Handmade New Kitchen Scale from AmazonBasics Amazon Gift Card Offer redoaks redoaks redoaks  Amazon Echo Starting at $49.99 Kindle Voyage Nintendo Digital Games Shop Now Learn more

Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

  • List Price: $22.95
  • Save: $4.30 (19%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 12 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.
Architecture's Desire: Re... has been added to your Cart
+ $3.99 shipping
Used: Good | Details
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Book shows minor use. Cover and Binding have minimal wear and the pages have only minimal creases. A tradition of southern quality and service. All books guaranteed at the Atlanta Book Company. Our mailers are 100% recyclable.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Architecture's Desire: Reading the Late Avant-Garde (Writing Architecture) Paperback – October 2, 2009

2 customer reviews

See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price
New from Used from
"Please retry"
$12.89 $7.83
$18.65 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Only 12 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

  • Architecture's Desire: Reading the Late Avant-Garde (Writing Architecture)
  • +
  • Histories of the Immediate Present: Inventing Architectural Modernism (Writing Architecture)
  • +
  • The Possibility of an Absolute Architecture (Writing Architecture)
Total price: $55.11
Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews


At the very moment when the death of theory by the victorious sword of the real has been loudly proclaimed, Michael Hays' lyrical return to the 1970s when architecture first fully realized its potential to become a conceptual practice is both welcome and much needed. His close attention to key works by Hejduk, Eisenman, and Rossi uncovers striking connections between this commonly repressed substratum and the instrumental turn recently taken by architects such as Bernard Tschumi and Rem Koolhaas and persuasively turns the 'reality' of contemporary architecture upside down to reveal our new 'real' to be driven by forces more mysterious and intangible than ever.

(Sylvia Lavin, Director of Critical Studies and MA/PhD Programs, UCLA Department of Architecture and Urban Design)

About the Author

K. Michael Hays is Eliot Noyes Professor of Architectural Theory at Harvard's Graduate School of Design. In 2000 he was appointed the first Adjunct Curator at the Whitney Museum for American Art. He is the author, among other books, of Modern Architecture and the Posthumanist Subject (1995) and the editor of Architecture Theory since 1968 (2000), both published by the MIT Press.


Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Series: Writing Architecture
  • Paperback: 216 pages
  • Publisher: The MIT Press (October 2, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0262513021
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262513029
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #365,729 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
See both customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Michael Hays of Harvard GSD has produced an interesting and thought-provoking take on the ways in which the architects Aldo Rossi, Peter Eisenman, John Hedjuk, and Bernard Tschumi sought to "negotiate the real"in their construction of concepts and "subject positions" (during the years roughly 1966-1983). The author is admirably clear in stating up front that this has little or nothing to do with the "making of things" (architectural objects). It is an historical compte rendu of the imputed philosophical aspirations of this (so-called late avant-garde) generation via their "inquiry into what is, what might be, and how the latter can happen."

The discussion is launched by way of the "received" views of the late critic and Renaissance scholar Manfredo Tafuri and the somewhat more recently deceased Mannerist historian and critic Colin Rowe, whose rather different yet coincident views are labeled "not so much incorrect, as... not correct enough" with regard to the impasse of post-modernist architectural ambitions. Instead, Hays would like to bracket Tafurian black pessimism and Rovian inquisitive skepticism with the question: "Where does architecture come from, and what authorizes its existence as architecture--- beyond the [largely Humanist-based] constitutions already in place?", a demand he specifies to have been the "query of the late avant-garde.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Cho on July 29, 2012
Format: Paperback
Around the 1970s to 80s when architecture was losing its immediate use value for representation with the advent of late-capitalism characterized by the development of media and consumer society, emerged a vanguard of architects who attempted not to miss architecture's 'autonomy' pondering on its subject position as a "socially symbolic production" (as Hays puts it after Jamesonian formulation of narrative as a "socially symbolic act"). Against the contemporary heteronomy of postmodern architects - say, Venturi or Graves - who unhesitatingly assembled bygone architectural lexicons affirming the main streets where consumer society's commodity fetishism prevailed, the autonomy for which the late avant-garde sought evolved from Rossi's 'meconnaissance (misrecognition)' of autonomy to produce imaginary 'analogy' aspiring for the City as the social symbolic, through Eisenman's autonomous 'compulsion to repeat' syntactic abstraction instead of semantics, and toward Hejduk's imaginary 'encounter' with the uncanny or the extimate, i.e. familiar but strange, figures of the real, and Tschumi's symbolic 'spacing' to metonymically trace the endless generation of unsubstantial events of the real - that is to say, "relative autonomy" in Althusserian terms, or "semi-autonomy" in Jamesonian. This series of takes by discursive architecture to remain as autonomous subjects in the material reality overdetermined by the capital was an inevitable project doomed to failure every time, which was nevertheless for the 'better failure' to resist the contradiction of history whose practico-inert operates all the time.Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
Architecture's Desire: Reading the Late Avant-Garde (Writing Architecture)
This item: Architecture's Desire: Reading the Late Avant-Garde (Writing Architecture)
Price: $18.65
Ships from and sold by

Want to discover more products? Check out these pages to see more: adorno and performance, reading architecture, metaphors and architecture, hejduk prime