Architecture and Revolution: Contemporary Perspectives on Central and Eastern Europe

By Neil Leach | Go to book overview

13

The dark side of thedomus

The redomestication of Central and Eastern Europe

Neil Leach

Within recent architectural theory architecture as 'dwelling' has become something of a dominant paradigm amid calls for a regionalist architecture and celebration of the concept of genius loci. 1 This is an approach which emanates from the work of the German philosopher, Martin Heidegger, and which has been pursued by those who have developed his thought-architectural theorists such as Christian Norberg-Schulz and philosophers such as Gianni Vattimo. 2 Many have looked to an architecture of 'dwelling' as a means of combatting the alienation of contemporary society and of resisting the homogenising placelessness of International Style architecture.

In the context of Central and Eastern Europe, in particular, architects have looked to such an approach as an antidote to the bland uniformity of state architecture of the communist years. It is an approach which reflects the sudden upsurge of interest in the philosophy of Heidegger within culture in general following the collapse of communism. What I wish to argue, however, is that taken to an extreme 'dwelling' itself-the logic of the domus-can have negative consequences. There is, I would maintain, a negative side to 'dwelling', a dark side to the domus, which makes this approach somewhat inappropriate for a new Europe which has already come under the shadow of the dark side of nationalism.


Heidegger and the question of dwelling

According to Heidegger, one's capacity to live on this earth-to 'dwell' in the phenomenological sense-is an essentially architectural experience. The very Being of being is linked to one's situatedness in the world. This is the thesis that comes out most clearly in his essay, 'Building, Dwelling, Thinking'. As the title of this essay infers, for Heidegger there is a clear link between 'dwelling' and architecture. The whole concept of 'dwelling' is grounded in the architectural. For Heidegger, a building should be on and of the soil, of the location on which it is built. He illustrates this with the example of a Greek temple, which sits so naturally within its setting it is as though it has been 'brought forth' by its setting. Throughout Heidegger's thinking there is an emphasis on the soil, on the earth, and this applies especially to the question of architecture. Buildings are not buildings in the abstract, but they gain their very sense of presence

-150-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Architecture and Revolution: Contemporary Perspectives on Central and Eastern Europe
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 240

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.