MIT HTC Forum: PRODUCING GEOPOLITICS
The Cool Look of Reasonable Consumption: “Lifestyle” in Cold War Czech Architectural Discourse
Tuesday, September 22
MIT Room 3-133
One of the most famous events marking the cold war tension’s capacity to infiltrate all aspects of life revolved around a washing machine. The image of Nixon and Khrushchev standing together at the American Exhibit in Moscow in 1957, observing a scene of suburban domestic life, allegorically summarizes the “peaceful race” that held the world in balance for four decades after the Yalta meeting of 1945. Although the juxtaposition of relative luxury to relative scarcity appropriately describes the most basic circumstances of life (and practicing architecture) on the opposing sides of the curtain, this juxtaposition has often obfuscated the importance that the concept of lifestyle held in the postwar discourse about the Second World War.
This talk will examine the status of the concept of lifestyle in the work of the Club for The Study of Consumption in Prague (1946-1948), and track related invocations of lifestyle in the Czech postwar architectural discourse.
The Fall 2009 HTC Forum, Producing Geo-Politics, considers creative production within geo-political systems. HTC Forum events are free and open to the public. Organized by the History, Theory, and Criticism Program of Architecture and Art at MIT with the generous support of the Lipstadt-Stieber Fund. For information about this and other forum events, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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