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Why We Build: Power and Desire in Architecture Paperback – September 2, 2014


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Design; Reprint edition (September 2, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062277561
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062277565
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 1 x 8.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #464,597 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“[A] lively account. . . Moore’s deftly chosen and analyzed examples range from Alberti’s Tempio Malatestiano and Jamaa el Fna “square” in Marrakesh to Manhattan’s High Line. This is a highly engaging. . . vision of architecture’s emotive and pragmatic powers.” (Publishers Weekly)

“Thoughtful and elegantly written, Why We Build will appeal to anyone with an interest in architecture, and the egos, power struggles and human relationships behind the creation of our surroundings.” (The Spectator)

“Intelligent and cultured... Astringent and subtle.” (The Independent)

“With unfailingly fresh insight. Moore decrypts the ideological narratives of buildings with the same fluency he brings to bear on materials, forms and spaces: today’s architectural criticism rarely seems so humane or intelligent.” (Sunday Telegraph)

“A fascinating work of love, intellectual curiosity and endurance…Suggest[s] the possibility of a more grown-up and subtle way of thinking about our architecture. (Literary Review)

“Supremely ambitious…[Moore] writes with economy, clarity and wit. The prospect of 400 pages in his presence is not an unhappy one.” (Building Design)

“Studious and serious, with meaningful insights on where we are going in the future. . . . In today’s world of flip journalism, Rowan Moore is refreshing.” (Frank Gehry)

“A vivid account. . . Stimulat[es] the reader.” (Wall Street Journal)

“Rowan Moore. . . can build: He is trained in the craft himself. He also knows how to write descriptively and deliciously. . . An engaging, joyous read. . . Moore’s writing is lithe and sensual. . . His delight in the subject is everywhere and infectious.” (Cleveland Plain Dealer)

“[A] lively, wide-ranging and thought-provoking new book . . . . Devastatingly funny if deeply disturbing. . . . No other newspaper architecture critic [is] as sharp an assessor of the built environment as Moore.” (New York Review of Books)

About the Author

Rowan Moore is the architecture critic for The Observer (London); he previously held the same post for The Evening Standard. From 2002 to 2008 he was the director of the Architecture Foundation. In 2013, he was named Critic of the Year by the Society of Editors (UK). A trained architect himself, he lives in London.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By John Morris Dixon on February 4, 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Only a fraction read to date, but impressed.
Examines interesting, often offbeat, situations. Comes to strong, convincing conclusions.
Brilliant use of English (those Brits!). Sometimes goes overboard with colorful wording.
Recommended to anyone with interest in architecture or urban development.
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More About the Author

Rowan Moore is the architecture critic for The Observer (London); he previously held the same post for The Evening Standard. From 2002 to 2008 he was the director of the Architecture Foundation. A trained architect himself, he lives in London.

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