The Crisis of the African-American Architect

Conflicting Cultures of Architecture and (Black) Power

by Melvin Mitchell



Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 11/19/2002

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 6x9
Page Count : 415
ISBN : 9780595243266

About the Book

" another missing piece of our rich history and profound contribution to western civilization. For history buffs please put this book on your must read list... "

George C. Fraser, Author of Race For Success and
Success Runs In Our Race

"[Mitchell] believes that the entire future of blacks in the field of architecture is in jeopardy He then discusses the impact of the Harlem Renaissance on black architecture and the subsequent emergence of Howard University as the center of the black architectural universe..."

The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education

" seminal "

Architecture Magazine

In this long overdue book, aimed at Black America and her allies, Melvin Mitchell poses the question "why haven't black architects developed a Black Architecture that complements modernist black culture that is rooted in world-class blues, jazz, hip-hop music, and other black aesthetic forms?" His provocative thesis, inspired by Harold Cruse's landmark book, The Crisis of the Negro Intellectual, exposes the roots of an eighty-year-old estrangement between black architects and Black America.

Along the way he provides interesting details about the politics of downtown development in the Marion Barry era of Washington, DC. Mitchell calls for a bold and inclusive "New (Black) Urbanism." He sees the radical reform and "re-missioning" of the handful of accredited HBCU based architecture schools as a critical tool in refashioning a rapprochement between black architects and Black America.

About the Author

Melvin Mitchell is a Fellow in the American Institute of Architects. He practices in Washington, DC, where he is also adjunct professor at the University of the District of Columbia. He taught at Howard and headed the graduate architecture program at Morgan. His degrees are from Howard and the Harvard Graduate School of Design.