chapter  1
14 Pages

Introduction: Becoming ‘Modern’

Investigating the circumstances in which mature architectural traditions and building cultures encountered modernity, and the forms that emerged from the cultural turmoil of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, this book aims to reclaim a history of a city that has been denied modernity. The arbiters of culture in Europe have asserted autonomy in the production of particular architectural and institutional arrangements that they have labeled as ‘modern.’ However, the fundamental connections of economic, political, and cultural interdependencies across the world made modernity an essentially global project. Dipesh Chakrabarty has persuasively argued that ‘Europe’s acquisition of the

adjective modern for itself is a piece of global history of which an integral part is the story of European imperialism.’1