Theory’s Curriculum

Theory’s Curriculum

Fragment of Cornelis van Haarlem, Antrum Platonicum (Plato’s Cave), 1604, engraving. Source: British Museum.

e-flux Architecture presents
Theory’s Curriculum
May 18, 2019, 10am
311 East Broadway
New York, NY 10002

Syllabi are theory’s infrastructure. They set a program for study, give structure to vast networks of ideas, and define an interpretative stance on the world. This one–day event will address who our theory syllabi represent, what theoretical objects or concerns they should address, and why we should continue to teach architectural theory today? The program will include the launch and presentation of the e–flux Architecture project Theory’s Curriculum as well as responses to the project by 12 panelists who will discuss the who, what and why of architectural theory today in a series of panel sessions.


Marta Caldeira, Yale University
Tao Sule DuFour, Cornell University
Mario Gooden, Coumbia GSAPP
Sophie Hochhäusl, University of Pennsylvania
Dora Epstein Jones, Texas Tech University
Sanford Kwinter, Pratt Institute
Peter Laurence, Clemson University
Sylvia Lavin, Princeton University
John May, Harvard GSD
Ana Miljacki, MIT
Meredith TenHoor, Pratt Institute
David Theodore, McGill University 


Matthew Allen, University of Toronto
Joseph Bedford, Virginia Tech
Elisa Dainese, Dalhousie University
Gabriel Fuentes, Marywood University
Antonio Furgiuele, Wentworth Institute of Technology
Joseph Godlewski, Syracuse University
Jeremy Lecomte, SCI-Arc
Jake Matatyaou, SCI-Arc
Ginger Nolan, University of Southern California
Bryan Norwood, University of Michigan
Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco, Iowa State University
Marrikka Trotter, SCI-Arc



Meredith TenHoor, David Theodore, Tao Sule DuFour; moderated by Joseph Godlewski


SESSION 2: What?
Ana Miljacki, John May, Mario Gooden, Dora Epstein Jones; moderated by Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco


Sanford Kwinter, Sylvia Lavin, Marta Caldeira, Peter Laurence; moderated by Joseph Bedford



4:30–4:45pm: Joseph Bedford and Nick Axel

This event is organized by Joseph Bedford. Thanks go to Nick Axel for institutional support and editorial guidance and to Joseph Godlewski for fund-raising support and programming advice. The event was made possible by the following sponsors: Global Architectural History Teaching Collaborative; Virginia Tech Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, College of Architecture and Urban Studies, and School of Architecture + Design; School of Architecture, Syracuse University; John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design, University of Toronto; Department of Architecture, Wentworth Institute of Technology; and Department of Architecture, Iowa State University College of Design

For more information, contact


Joseph Bedford is Assistant Professor of History and Theory at Virginia Tech. He holds a PhD from Princeton University, degrees from Cambridge University and the Cooper Union, and is the founding editor of Attention: The Audio Journal for Architecture and The Architecture Exchange, a platform for theoretical exchange in architecture.

Nick Axel is an architect, editor, educator, and curator. He is Deputy Editor of e-flux Architecture and Head of the Architectural Design department at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie.

Sylvia Lavin is a critic, curator, historian and theorist whose work explores the limits of architecture across a wide spectrum of historical periods. She is Professor of Architecture at Princeton University and was Chairperson of the Department of Architecture and Urban Design at UCLA. Her books and catalogs include Architecture Itself and Other Postmodernization Effects, Kissing Architecture, and Everything Loose Will Land: 1970s Art and Architecture in Los Angeles. She received her Ph.D. from the Department of Art and Archaeology at Columbia University, and has received numerous awards and grants including from the Getty Research Institute, the Graham Foundation, the AIA and the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She is currently working on a book about trees.

Meredith TenHoor is an architectural and urban historian, and Professor in the School of Architecture at Pratt Institute. She is also editor, founding board member, and former chair of the Aggregate Architectural History Collaborative, a group devoted to publishing and advancing collaboratively-produced scholarship in architectural theory and history. Her research examines how architecture, urbanism, and landscape design participate in the distribution of resources, and how these design practices have produced understandings of the limits and capacities of bodies. She has written extensively about the relationships between food and agriculture and architectural, cultural, and territorial change in twentieth-century France. Other key topics are histories of justice, exclusion, and displacement in architecture and urban planning; architectures of consumption and biopolitics; and the intellectual history of francophone and anglophone critical theory. Her publications include Toxics(2022), Black Lives Matter (2015), Street Value: Shopping, Planning and Politics at Fulton Mall (2010), and a forthcoming book about the design history and political economies of French food systems. Newer projects address the bodily and environmental impacts of building materials, the architectural imaginaries of environmental futures, and the career of the French architect Nicole Sonolet, who designed housing, hospitals, and villages focused around the provision of care.

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