Virág Molnár. Building the State: Architecture, Politics, and State Formation in Post-War Central Europe. London: Routledge, 2013; Kimberly Elman Zarecor. Manufacturing Socialist Modernity: Housing in Czechoslovakia, 1945–1960. Pittsburgh, 2011

Nicolette Makovicky

Abstract


As such, the studies recently published by Kimberly Zarecor and Virág Molnár constitute a welcome addition to what is still a relatively small field of academic scholarship. Presenting two extremely sensitive and nuanced readings of the development of architectural form and practice in the former GDR, Hungary, and Czechoslovakia, they turn a much-needed critical eye on three less studied European architectural traditions. From this peripheral position, they very effectively challenge conventional readings of Communist-era planning and construction as a simple reflection of the ideological goals of the socialist nation state or the stylistic impositions from Moscow.

 


Keywords


Socialist Architecture; Central and Eastern Europe; Urban Planning; Socialist Modernization; Housing Policy; Dwelling

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