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Building in China Henry K. Murphy's Adaptive Architecture, 1914-1935 cover
  • ISBN: 9780295980959
  • ISBN10: 0295980958

Building in China Henry K. Murphy's Adaptive Architecture, 1914-1935

by Jeffrey W. Cody

  • List Price: $50.00
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Univ of Washington Pr
  • Publish date: 12/01/2001
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Building in China is about striking an architectural balance between the pull of monumental tradition and the push of technological novelty. Centering on the dynamic period of post-imperial and pre-Communist China, the book focuses on the building and city planning initiatives of Henry Murphy. A little-known American architect, Murphy ventured to China in 1914 to design a campus for the Yale-in-China program and found himself captivated by the question of how to preserve China's rich architectural traditions while also designing new buildings using up-to-date Western technologies. Murphy's buildings were compromises in a tumultuous society facing an uncertain future. Inadvertently they became political emblems, as Chinese rulers such as Chiang Kai-shek and Sun Yat-sen's son called on Murphy for city planning advice to realize their hopes for urban reconstruction.

There are few serious studies of Western architects in the 20th century who practiced in non-Western contexts, and this book makes significant contributions to the fields of both American and Chinese architectural history. Those interested in city planning or urban history, post-colonialist theory, comparative Asian studies, the history of technology, or historic preservation practice will find this book breaking new ground by analyzing fresh evidence.

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