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Amy Perkins on Speaking of Buildings
24 August, 2021
My interest in alternative sources for constructing architectural historiographies came about through multiple various conversations.
Jane Hall spoke about how and why documents are preserved during the Parity Talks V in relation to her own experience with Lina Bo Bardi’s archive. Helen Thomas recommended that I look at Janina Gosseye’s research, which has since led me to other great oral histories such as Margaretta Jolly’s Sisterhood and After: An Oral History of the UK Women’s Liberation Movement, 1968–present which contains, among many other voices, that of Barbara Jones, a builder in the 1980s, who talks about her involvement in the WAMT (Women and Manual Trades), a municipal feminist initiative borne out of the Women’s Liberation Movement.
I was never really taught to question who’s stories I was listening to in my own architectural education, but knowing who gets to speak and who is listening is key to undoing patriarchal ideas of authorship and allowing those who have a hand in the making of, maintenance of, and experience of architecture to be written into its history.