Peg Rawes is a contributor to an episode of the BBC Radio 4 programme Living Room, speaking about the Parker Morris report, “Homes for Today and Tomorrow” (1961). The programme asks how past efforts to improve housing space standards can shed light on the present crisis. Listen here.
We are delighted to announce the publication of Spinoza’s Philosophy of Ratio, edited by Beth Lord and published by Edinburgh University Press. The book brings together essays on Spinoza, ratio, architecture, and wellbeing from the Equalities of Wellbeing project.
30% Discount on book purchases available until 31 Dec. 2018: Lord_Worldwide Flyer
Readers will learn from this book that a philosophy of ratio is not to be conflated with a rationalist philosophy. The authors draw on the three senses of ratio – reason, relation and proportion – to explore their interdependence and, crucially, the emergent and constructed conatus towards equality and wellbeing. This valuable book demonstrates that empiricism and rationalism need not be opposed. – Andrej Radman, Delft University of Technology
This volume represents an important collective re-thinking of Spinoza’s key concept of ratio. Along with new interpretations of his treatment of the relations between reason and emotion, it offers fascinating insights into the relevance of his philosophy for understanding contemporary issues in relation to artistic practice, architecture and the built environment.- Genevieve Lloyd, Emeritus Professor in Philosophy, University of New South Wales
From his geometrical method to his geometrical examples; from his doctrine of reason to his explanation of bodies in motion; and from his account of the affects to his understanding of social relations, ratio is of prime importance in Spinoza’s philosophy.
These essays explore the surprisingly varied dimensions of this unacknowledged keystone of Spinoza’s thought. They take you from Spinoza’s geometrical diagrams to his concepts of mind, body, the emotions, and the cosmos. It shows how Spinoza’s thinking about ratio influences the concept of proportion in Gulliver’s Travels, the differential ontology of Deleuze, egalitarian design for wellbeing, and the notion of an affective architecture.
Introduction, Beth Lord
Spinoza’s Ontology Geometrically Illustrated: A Reading of Ethics IIP8S, Valtteri Viljanen
Reason and Body in Spinoza’s Metaphysics, Michael LeBuffe
Ratio and Activity: Spinoza’s Biologizing of the Mind in an Aristotelian Key, Heidi M. Ravven
Harmony in Spinoza and His Critics, Timothy Yenter
Ratio as the basis of Spinoza’s concept of equality, Beth Lord
Proportion as a barometer of the affective life in Spinoza, Simon B. Duffy
Spinoza, Heterarchical Ontology and Affective Architecture, Gökhan Kodalak
Dissimilarity: Spinoza’s ethical ratios and housing welfare, Peg Rawes
The greater part: How intuition forms better worlds, Stefan White
Slownesses and Speeds, Latitudes and Longitudes: In the Vicinity of Beatitude, Hélène Frichot
The Eyes of the Mind: Proportion in Spinoza, Swift, Ibn Tufayl, Anthony Uhlmann
Spinoza’s Philosophy of Ratio, edited by Beth Lord, was published by Edinburgh University Press in May 2018.
Comprising 11 essays from contributors to the Equalities of Wellbeing project – Peg Rawes, Beth Lord, Simon B. Duffy, Helene Frichot, Gokhan Kodalak, Michael LeBuffe, Heidi M. Ravven, Anthony Uhlmann, Valtteri Viljanen, Stefan White, and Timothy Yenter – the book argues that ratio is a key concept in Spinoza’s philosophy, from reason, minds, bodies, and the cosmos, to architecture, art and literature. Find out more about the book in this longer post, and at the EUP website.
- 30% Discount on Spinoza’s Philosophy of Ratio until 31 Dec 2018 when you order direct. Details here: Lord_Worldwide Flyer
The Humanitarian architecture society at Sheffield University screened Equal by Design earlier this month to an audience of around 15 students.
6 December 2017, 6:30 PM
The Building Centre
This event, chaired by Peg Rawes and featuring architects who contributed to project film Equal by Design, is part of the Making Wellbeing: from Birth to Death exhibition at The Building Centre, curated by The Built Environment Trust.
Tickets and further information available here.
Solutions to the housing crisis are political and complex with change needed at policy level as well as across the building industry. However, debates often exclude the role of the architect. This event will explore how architects can be actively involved in addressing issues of inequality and disparities of wellbeing in the built environment through housing design and provision.
Architects Peter Barber, Alex Ely and Sarah Wigglesworth will talk about their approaches to human-centred design and concerns for wellbeing. The speakers will shed light on the positive agency an architect can have and will consider what must be addressed for such approaches to have a stronger influence on housing provision and wider architectural practice.
The individual presentations will be followed by a chaired panel discussion and audience Q+A.
– Peter Barber, director of Peter Barber Architects
– Alex Ely, principal of Mæ Architects
– Sarah Wigglesworth, director of Sarah Wigglesworth Architects
Chair: Peg Rawes, co-author of Equal By Design and senior lecturer at the Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London
Tickets and further information available here.
Exhibition run now extended to 26 January
We are excited to announce the Making Wellbeing exhibition, opening on 9 October at The Building Centre in London. Project film Equal by Design is featured in the exhibition.
9 October – 26 January 2018
The Building Centre, Store Street, London
Making Wellbeing is an exhibition and related programme that assembles key themes, recent explorations and interventions in the built environment that impact wellbeing at all stages of life, from birth to death.
In 2017, wellbeing is a benchmark that drives everything from government policy to classroom spaces, from the interior arrangement of offices to the design of buildings for care at the end-of-life.
But the term itself is a contested notion with many facets. Through a selection of major international architectural projects, new smart city technologies, research by ethnographers and academics, and even an interactive sleep pod, the exhibition gathers voices and knowledge from across the spectrum to offer insights and open up debate.
The exhibition will be accompanied by a major event series and will be the key theme for the second issue of BE:, the journal of The Built Environment Trust.
Curated by The Built Environment Trust
SPINOZA & AESTHETICS/SPACE
Friday April 21, 2017
INTRODUCTION | JB Shank | University of Minnesota 11:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
WORKSHOP I | Arun Saldanha | University of Minnesota: Spinoza’s Geography of Bodies: Global Capitalism and the Responsibility to Revolt
Respondents| Harshit Rathi + Joseph Bermas-Dawes 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
LUNCH BREAK 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
WORKSHOP II | Peg Rawes| University College London: Dissimilarity: Spinoza’s Ethical Ratios and Housing Welfare. Respondents| Anjali Ganapathy + Austin Young 2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
COFFEE BREAK 3:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
WORKSHOP III | Susan Ruddick| University of Toronto: A/Synchronic Earth: Spinoza and the Spatial Aesthetic of the Anthropocene. Respondents| Kai Bosworth + Lindsey Weber 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
135 Nicholson Hall | University of Minnesota
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In April 2017, Peg Rawes’ paper ‘Housing Biopolitics and Care’ is due to be published in A. Radman and H. Sohn (eds), Critical and Clinical Cartographies: Architecture, Robotics, Medicine, Philosophy (Edinburgh University Press).
On 20 March 2017, Peg will be giving an invited talk on the film and project: ‘Housing Biopolitics and Care’ for the Architecture Space and Society Centre, Department of Art History, Birkbeck, University of London.
On 19 April 2017, she will give an invited talk to the Department of Architecture, University of Ames, Ames, Ohio, US, and on 21 April, an invited Keynote at the University of Minnesota.
On 19 November 2016, Peg presented a co-authored conference paper with Dr Doug Spencer (Westminster) on ‘Material and Rational Feminisms’ at Architecture & Feminisms: Ecologies/Economies/Technologies, AHRA (Architectural Humanities Research Association) 2016, KTH Stockholm. The audience was international and included around 50 academics, students, and architectural professionals.
On 9 January 2017, she gave an invited talk on the film at London Architecture School to 35 postgraduate students and academics.
On 19 January 2017, she gave an invited talk on the film to Architectural Interdisciplinary Studies, UCL, to around 25 students and academics.
On 14 February 2017, Peg participated in ‘The House that Philosophy Built’, a panel organized by The Forum (LSE) to a public audience of around 75. The talk is now available on the Forum’s Blog at: http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/theforum/the-house-that-philosophy-built/.