Philosophies aims to address how the researcher in architecture can make use of the plethora of philosophies available to them, both from within and from without the discipline. We will place a special emphasis on the two-way conceptual traffic between architecture and philosophy, in the recognition of the reciprocal relationship of influence these two disciplines have historically maintained with respect to each other. What are the strategies and tactics that can be fruitfully employed to engage in diverse philosophies from the point of view of the discipline of architecture? How does the architectural researcher maintain a creative and critical relay between theory and practice? How can concepts and arguments (drawn from philosophy and elsewhere) be mobilized by the architectural researcher?

The course Philosophies engages in the reciprocal relationships that can be forged between the disciplines of philosophy and architecture, and is structured around the thematic matrix of relationality-spatiality-materiality, further defined across three modules: 1. critical and participatory philosophies; 2. feminist and minoritarian philosophies; 3. posthumanist and new materialist philosophies. In the first module the course introduces the role that critical theories, as well as increasingly established participatory approaches have to play in architecture; in the second module the course presents feminist epistemologies, ontologies and practices and asserts their enduring and crucial relevance in architecture; and finally, the third module ventures in the direction of posthuman futures and new materialisms in order to imagine new ecologies of practice for the coming architect and architectures in formation. Each of the three proposed modules stresses the socio-political context of architectural thinking and production, and the role that complex networks of power relations play in specific locales of architectural action. The course is designed to maintain relevance with regard to the four key areas supported by Architecture in Effect, these include: Critical Historiography; Material Conditions; Critical Projections; Architects in Formation.

Course designer, co-ordinater, examiner: Dr Hélène Frichot, Critical Studies in Architecture, KTH Architecture, Stockholm, Sweden

Intended Learning Outcomes

By attending this course participants can expect to develop skills in:

  1. Ability to collaboratively define key concepts and arguments introduced in the course literature and beyond
  2. Ability to practice close reading and critical and creative writing exercises and upload these onto a seminar Blog
  3. Ability to theorise self-directed design research projects using key concepts and arguments
  4. Ability to create new or hybrid concepts and thereby develop arguments pertinent to current research projects
  5. Ability to actively participate in seminar discussions at a high level


January 24, 2013 at GTH Gothenburg

Philosophies Course Introduction

Content and pre-course assignment is presented at the conclusion of the Approaches course in Gothenburg, Chalmers, 11.00-11.30 (optional) as well as by mail to everybody enrolled for the course.

March 13-15 at KTH Stockholm

Philosophies Course Module One – Critical and Participatory Philosophies: RELATIONALITY

April 17-19 at KTH Stockholm

Philosophies Course Module Two – Feminist and Minoritarian Philosophies: SPATIALITY

May 15-17 at KTH Stockholm

Philosophies Course Module Three – Posthumanist and New Materialist Philosophies: MATERIALITY

Summer break

September 11-13 at KTH Stockholm

Philosophies Course Conclusion