This book deploys literature to explore the social lives of objects and places. The first book of its kind, it embraces things as diverse as escalators, coins, skyscrapers, pottery, radios, and robots, and encompasses places as various as home, country, cities, streets, and parks. Here, fiction, poetry, and literary non-fiction are mined for stories of design, which are paired with images of contemporary architecture and design. Through the work of authors such as César Aires, Nicholson Baker, Lydia Davis, Orhan Pamuk, and Virginia Woolf, this book shows the enormous influence that places and things exert in the world.

chapter Chapter 1|42 pages

Culture: Identity, Displacement, Exile

chapter Chapter 2|34 pages

Politics: Prosecution, Obfuscation, Possibility

chapter Chapter 3|36 pages

Beings: Unruly Things, Golems, Cyborgs

chapter Chapter 4|36 pages

Technology: Connections, Disruptions, Amplifications

chapter Chapter 5|42 pages

Domesticity: Cleaning, Mending, Caring

chapter Chapter 6|41 pages

Consuming: Shopping, Collecting, Hoarding

chapter Chapter 7|38 pages

Senses: Perceptions, Vibrations, Visions

chapter Chapter 8|35 pages

Mortality: Death, Burial, Resurrection