chapter  4
13 Pages

Architecture, architect and the recessive nature of technology: the work of Laurie Baker in India

While the anxiety regarding loss of legible identity has often given rise to conscious emphases on the visual expressive content, the architectural discipline has also had to contend with the development of reductivism and overt technological intentionality. The compromise has been a problematic attempt at masking such universalizing abstracting tendencies with the superficial expressions of identity, which in many cases fitted in well with the quick fix of identity politics. As Abbinnett quoting Adorno states:

Ultimately, then, the secret tendency of culture to mask its complicity with the legal and political violence of its epoch is made manifest in the culture industry’s reproduction of ‘kitsch’: those representations of the eternal forms of romance, heroism and sacrifice which draw us away from the barbarism of the present. Adorno put it in Minima Moralia: ‘Today, when the consciousness of rulers is beginning to coincide with the overall tendency of society, the tension between culture and kitsch is breaking down [. . .] In administering the whole of mankind, it [kitsch] administers the breach between man and culture’.