Fernando Luiz Lara

in The Rise of Popular Modernist Architecture in Brazil

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print October 2008 | ISBN: 9780813032894
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813038605 | DOI:

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The fact that in the United States modernity flourished everywhere except in residential architecture puzzled the author, for in his native Brazil the opposite was true. Modernity in Brazil was manifested in the built environment more than in any other facet of society. This book enlarges the scope of what is considered worthy of architectural scholarship by investigating the acceptance of modern architecture in Brazil, as manifested in its middle-class housing of the 1950s. It also locates popular modernism within the context of modernist architecture and of the current challenges faced by architecture. The main goal is to explore the dissemination of architectural vocabulary into middle-class housing in order to discuss from an architectural perspective some of the reasons why modern architecture seems to have been better accepted in Brazil than in the United States or Western Europe. In the process, an original analysis of Brazilian popular modernism is presented in hopes of challenging the traditional boundaries of what is considered good architecture. Moreover, an overview of the chapters included in this book is given.

Keywords: Brazil; United States; modern architecture; middle-class housing; popular modernism; modernist architecture; Western Europe

Chapter.  1355 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

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