African Modernism and Its Afterlives (Book)
Brings together research by Africanist anthropologists and architectural historians who share in the pursuit of an archaeology of modernist architecture in Africa. Case studies connect the colonial and postcolonial origins of modernist architecture, the historical processes, and present use and habitation. 132 b/w and 35 col. photographs.
Paul Wenzel Geissler teaches social anthropology at the University of Oslo. With Lachenal, Manton, Tousignant and other scholars and artists he published Traces of the Future (2016). With Ruth Prince, he is currently studying remains and afterlives of epidemics in East Africa, revisiting their book on AIDS in Kenya, The Land Is Dying (2010).
Nina Berre is an architect and architectural historian, and Professor and Head of Institute of Form, theory and history at the Oslo School of Architecture and design. She was director of Architecture at the National Museum of Art, Architecture and design in Norway from 2010 to 2018.
Johan Lagae is Full Professor in 20th Century Architectural History at Ghent University. His research focuses on colonial and postcolonial architecture and urbanisation in Central-Africa.
List of Figures
Introduction Recognizing African Modernisms
Paul Wenzel Geissler, Johan Lagae and Nina Berre
PART 1: AFRICAN MODERNISM
- Karl Henrik Nøstvik: Remnants of Nordic Aid
- Africa’s ‘Lone Star’: Building ‘New Liberia’ in the Context of Post-war Africa
- Countryside Reconstruction in Postcolonial Africa: The Ujamaa Experience
Karl Otto Ellefsen
- Technocratic Colonial Housing Policies and Reductive Modernism in Eastlands, Nairobi
- Transnational Exchanges in Postcolonial Zambia: School Buildings at the Intersection of Architectural, Political and Economic Globalization
Kim De Raedt
- Forms of Freedom: Soviet Gifts in Postcolonial Kenya
- Georg Lippsmeier and His Tropenbau: Salesmanship and Pragmatic Modernism
- Israel/Africa: The Laboratories of (Post)colonial Modernity
- ‘Tout le Congo est un Chantier’: Notes on the Archive of a (Post)colonial Construction Firm
Johan Lagae and Robby Fivez
Remnants of Nordic Aid in Africa: The Zambia World Bank Educational Projects
Remnants of Nordic Aid in Africa: The KICC & Fishery Station by Architect Karl Henrik Nøstvik in Africa
PART 2: AFTERLIVES
- ‘Kenya Grew from Here’: Property and History in a Nairobi Housing Estate
- Grave Reservations: Nigerian Literature and ‘European Reservations’ during Decolonization
- The Legacy of Nordic Expertise in Postcolonial Housing Schemes in Nairobi
Tom J. C. Anyamba
- Privatization and the Reshaping of the Recreational Landscape of the Industrial Zambian Copperbelt
- The Ruins of Turkana: An Archaeology of Failed Development in Northern Kenya
Samuel F. Derbyshire and Lucas Lowasa
- The Brand New Ruins of Public Health: A Tale of Two Buildings, Kinshasa, DRC
- ‘Is This Anthropology Really a Modern Subject?’: Kenyan Students’ Experience of Nairobi’s (Changing) University Architectures
Ida Skjong Grøvik
- Laboratory Unbuilt: An Architectural Biography of Postcolonial Science in East Africa
Paul Wenzel Geissler
Epilogue Buildings and People: Interdisciplinarity, Juxtaposition and Experimentation
Paul Wenzel Geissler and Johan Lagae
Notes on Contributors
'Tracing concrete connections between architecture and anthropology, African Modernism and Its Afterlives offers glimpses of past futures, half-remembered dreams and enduring structures. Engaging and ever clear-eyed, its chapters provide a trenchant guide to 20th century efforts to alter African social life through building, along with the artefacts they left behind.'
Peter Redfield, University of Southern California