F 9:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., Anderson Hall, Room 210

While we may be living in the “Anthropocene” geological age in which human action has become the primary factor impacting our planet, confronting the consequences of this condition requires a radical departure from anthropocentric paradigms, especially in design. Thus, if the modern design disciplines were configured through the social and technological matrix of the industrial metropolis and its massive population of human subjects (and the idea of the human subjectivity), today’s unprecedented environmental challenges indicate a necessary reconfiguration of knowledge and practice, projecting into an expanded field of non-human agencies and objects.

This course explores the conditions of possibility for such practices, with two intertwined  goals. The first is to provide an introduction to theories of “post-humanism” and the idea of the “post-human” in modernity. Second, the course explore relevance of such concepts for contemporary design practices, spanning architecture, urbanism, landscape and industrial design.  “Post-Humanism” most generally refers to a heterogeneous constellation of theoretical and philosophical projects that have problematized the received notions of “humanism” and the autonomous human subject in modernity and sought alternatives. The “post-human” refers to the literal  supplementation or enhancement of our biological condition as well as the displacement of the human as the primary agent and object. These can take the form of an expanded natural ecological paradigm as well as technological/cybernetic paradigms.  In design, the post-human also projects practices and projects that are not centered on humans as the only, or even primary user or consideration. Participating within this emerging discourse of post-human design, students in the course will work collaboratively to construct an atlas of these emerging terrains, one that diagrams concepts, techniques and practices.

Open to architecture students only, seniors and above. However the instructor will consider exceptions for non-architects and other grade levels on a case-by-case-basis. Space is limited and registration does not guarantee a space in this course. The final course roster is formulated on the first day of class by the instructor.

Apply Featured