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An entertaining Blitz on foolishness,
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This review is from: Exploding the Myths of Modern Architecture (Paperback)
Books on architecture are notoriously dull. Except for beautifully illustrated `coffee table' collections, architecture books from Alberti to the present day go on at great length about architectural theory. As the 20th century abandoned sound building practice in favour of, well..., nothing but theory, the flow of books has almost eclipsed the actual flow of awful architecture itself.
Most are unreadable.
This book is different. It is written specifically, and without pretension, for the general reader. It tackles, without taking any prisoners, one of the great mysteries of our age; why, when Modernist Architecture is almost universally despised, do we keep being offered more with no alternative?
The answer appears to be a deliberate detachment of the architectural profession and its attendant engineers, journalists, critics and `sophisticated' clients into what Millais terms a "ghetto". This ghetto, created by the rise of the Modernists in the 1930's, rests on a series of mutually supporting myths (functionalism, truth of construction, purity of form, etc.) that Millais assaults with all his strength and engineer's rationality.
The wonder is that the Modernist ghetto will probably survive this book by simply ignoring it. That should be the signal for the general reader, those outside the ghetto, to order a copy and grow wiser.