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Architecture: From Prehistory to Post-Modernism : The Western Tradition [Hardcover]

Marvin Trachtenberg
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Architecture: From Prehistory to Post Modernism Architecture: From Prehistory to Post Modernism 4.0 out of 5 stars (1)
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Book Description

January 1986 0130447021 978-0130447029
Moving back and forth between the long shot on historical trends and close-ups on major works and crucial architectural themes, this insightful, lively and original analysis also accepts the conventional period and thematic structures of architectural history and the canon of great buildings. Designed to help readers understand and appreciate what great architecture is in its full dimensions of use, structure and aesthetic qualities as well as its history, this lavishly illustrated book explains specific qualities of each period and the often-complex illuminating differences between the periods. This comprehensive volume examines all aspects of architectural history from the Ancient world, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance and Baroque periods through the modern world. For historians and architectural enthusiasts.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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For everyone interested in looking beyond the façades of architectural landmarks to learn about the forces that shaped them, Architecture: From Prehistory to Postmodernity has been a definitive resource since its publication in 1986. Marvin Trachtenberg and Isabelle Hyman, professors at New York University, weave complex information into an engrossing narrative. While the authors' focus is on the Western tradition, shared ancient roots inspired a chapter on aspects of Islamic architecture. In the second edition, Trachtenberg's well-supported opinions add a lively sense of engagement to a new chapter surveying major trends of the 1980s and 1990s (work by Renzo Piano, Frank Gehry, Daniel Liebeskind, and others). Among the special delights of the book are its excursions into fascinating architectural byways, such as the history of castles, why the mendicant monks wanted simpler churches, and the superiority of the truss to the girder. More than 1,000 illustrations, including 91color plates, provide ample visual reference. --Cathy Curtis --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

This new edition updates the 1986 edition of this authoritative historical survey of Western architecture. As the introduction points out, this survey is "mainly a history of monumental buildings." Trachtenberg (Dominion of the Eye: Urbanism, Art and Power in Early Modern Florence) and Hyman (Marcel Breuer, Architect) proceed chronologically, discussing significant styles, works, and architects. The scope is more restrictive than that of other heavyweights, e.g., Sir Banister Fletcher's a History of Architecture and Spiro Kostof and others' A History of Architecture: Settings and Rituals, which include non-Western and vernacular architecture. Nevertheless, this new volume considers diverse modes of modern architecture that have flourished, abetted by computer-aided design and unprecedented wealth, during the past 20 years. Included are very recent masterworks such as Daniel Libeskind's Jewish Museum in Berlin. The high-quality graphics include 91 color plates, and an illustrated glossary is provided. The many libraries holding the previous edition will want to purchase this update; other large public and academic libraries should also consider. David R. Conn, Surrey P.L., B.C.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most helpful customer reviews
Format:Hardcover
An update of an acclaimed survey of world architecture that is a much better read than its drab illustrations, dull layout and paucity of plans would suggest. Indeed, itŐs as hard to put down as it is to heft. The close analyses of Philip JohnsonŐs AT&T tower in New York and Norman FosterŐs HKSB tower in Hong Kong are brilliant, and the authors have the audacity to suggest that the high tech look of the one is as dishonest as the faux antique masonry of the other. This is an example of how the authors illuminate architectural history with concrete examples rather than windy generalizations. (Michael Webb is the book reviewer for LA Architect magazine.)
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Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Architecture: From Prehistory to Postmodernity (2nd Edition) June 14 2002
By Michael Webb - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
An update of an acclaimed survey of world architecture that is a much better read than its drab illustrations, dull layout and paucity of plans would suggest. Indeed, itŐs as hard to put down as it is to heft. The close analyses of Philip JohnsonŐs AT&T tower in New York and Norman FosterŐs HKSB tower in Hong Kong are brilliant, and the authors have the audacity to suggest that the high tech look of the one is as dishonest as the faux antique masonry of the other. This is an example of how the authors illuminate architectural history with concrete examples rather than windy generalizations. (Michael Webb is the book reviewer for LA Architect magazine.)
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great vast amount of knowledge June 17 2000
By A. M. Rivlin - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book contains the most comprehensive amout of Architectural infomation I have ever seen. I had to purchase this book for class and I would recommend it if you can find it... Not only can it help with studies a must own for regular knowledge.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Sept. 18 2012
By Viva - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Cheap version , save tens bucks than the latest one. Content is almost the same , except several pages of pics.
4.0 out of 5 stars I like it April 21 2014
By Motrin - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
It is an excellent book.
It is very easy to read and comprehensive.
I like it, I recommend this book.
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Architectural History Text Feb. 6 2013
By N. Serrano - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
a classic architectural history text, this book maintains the critical analysis necessary to be a comprehensive resource for the serious student. Not the pretty pictures and fancy diagrams of more contemporary textbooks, but does that really matter?
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