Comment: Architects, Redlining & Apartheid

   Andrews in the News | Posted on March 4, 2021

As the great architect I.M. Pei put it, “Life is architecture and architecture is the mirror of life.” So, it’s little wonder that I spent my years as an architecture student at a university in Michigan feeling like architecture wasn’t intended for people who look like me. To one professor’s credit we were briefly taught about ancient Egyptian architecture, stretching from the first known architect who designed the pyramid of Saqqara to how great Egyptian ingenuity laid the foundation for the classical architectural language of the ancient Greeks and Romans. But after only 14 pages on Egyptian architecture, we went on to study 576 pages of western typologies with slivers of Islamic architecture worked in. I was learning about and designing buildings that people from my community in Durban, South Africa, might never have the privilege to see, let alone inhabit.

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