''[A] feast for the mind...[with] a vital message: We can and must capitalize on this new knowledge to build more human-centered urban environments. It s a call to action we ignore at our peril.'' (COLIN ELLARD, AUTHOR OF PLACES OF THE HEART AND YOU ARE HERE)
''Goldhagen's illuminating book on the design of our world begins just where it should, with us and how we live, not with a dazzling shell. She shows us many ways that good design can uplift our lives and how poor design can fail us.'' (Barbara Tversky, Professor Emerita of Psychology at Stanford University)
''A remarkable book and a fascinating exploration of the human experience in the city. Ground breaking, informed, and inspired.'' (Mikyoung Kim, Landscape Architect)
''Welcome to Your World will go far to help us create healthy, equitable, and thriving cities. This is extremely powerful stuff.'' (Faith Rose, former Executive Director of the Public Design Commission of the City of New York Faith Rose, former Executive Director of the Public Design Commission of the City of New York)
''Lucidly written in beautiful prose, Welcome to Your World will stimulate and delight professionals, students, and nonprofessionals alike. A must-read!'' (NADER TEHRANI, AWARD-WINNING ARCHITECT AND DEAN OF THE IRWIN S. CHANIN SCHOOL OF ARCHITECTURE AT COOPER UNION)
''[Goldhagen's] analysis is practical and accessible ....[A] valuable compendium to design analysis and the benefits of progress in contemporary design. An eye-opening look at the ways in which carefully planned and executed design and architecture can expand cognitive faculties and improve daily life.'' --Kirkus
''Goldhagen's fresh perspective is deep, exciting, and optimistic.'' --Booklist
''Rarely does a book come along where its very premise is to stop you in your tracks, compel you to look around, take account of where you are standing… [Welcome to Your World] is one of those 'stop and smell the roses' experiences.'' --Huffington Post
From the Back Cover
One of the nation’s chief architecture critics reveals how the environments we build profoundly shape our feelings, memories, and well-being, and argues that we must harness this knowledge to construct a world better suited to human experience.
Taking an illuminating journey around the globe and into the brain, Welcome to Your World reveals that the built environment and its design matter far more than anybody, even architects, ever thought they did. Using cutting-edge research in cognitive neuroscience and environmental psychology, Sarah Williams Goldhagen articulates the ways in which a room, a building, or a city square affects us, and details our reactions to form, pattern, light, color, sound, texture, and more.
Expanding on these concepts, she walks us through some of the world’s best and worst buildings, landscapes, and cityscapes, from the Parthenon in Athens to One World Trade Center in Manhattan, from Amiens Cathedral in France to Berlin’s Holocaust Memorial, from the Luxembourg Gardens in Paris to the 798 Art District in Beijing. Supported by overwhelming evidence and clear-eyed analysis, she concludes that societies must reconsider what and how they build. Put simply: it requires the same resources to construct a building that impairs our capabilities as it does to erect a structure that enhances them. Ultimately the stakes—individual need and collective welfare—could not be higher.
Erudite, wise, and beautifully illustrated with more than 150 color photographs, Welcome to Your World is a vital, eye-opening guide to the spaces we inhabit, physically and mentally, and a clarion call to design for human experience.