Theory seminar on Architecture, Modernity and the Public Sphere: Giving shape to public urban spaces and public buildings remains a crucial issue in architecture at the start of the twenty-first century. A new web of public spaces is now available: a mesh of electronic super-highways, forums and addresses extending far beyond the immediate environs of the street or the square. Some claim that this new network makes the physical public space obsolete. Architects know better. They, after all, face the task of shaping public buildings and space, and are therefore compelled to find links among the various forms and gradations of the public sphere that exist today. Architects look for forms to address the changing public sphere.
In this regard they are challenged, on a daily basis, to take stands, to adopt Architectural Positions with respect to the developments in the public sphere.
The Architectural Positions seminar focuses on the texts of architects who are important voices in the debate on the public sphere. Each seminar addresses a different aspect of the debate about architecture, modernity and the public sphere. The six themes are, respectively:  Changing Definitions of Public and Private,  The Temporalities of the Public Sphere,  Image Building and Public Space,  Monumentality and Public Representation,  Alternating Programs and Practices, and  The Perception of the Public.
The course consists of a comprehensive introduction to the notions of modernity and the public sphere as they have been developed by Western thinkers. Subsequently the six themes are introduced and situated in their social and cultural context. Within this framework the positions that architects have been taken through texts [and projects] are discussed.
The seminar aims at a critical investigation of recent architectural positions on modernity and the public sphere. Students are asked to develop an own architectural position vis-a-vis modernity and the public sphere in the form of an essay.