The Women Who Changed Architecture

Princeton Architectural. Mar. 2022. 336p. ed. by Jan Cigliano Hartman. ISBN 9781616898717. $50. ARCH
While useful as a biographical dictionary, this title aims to write women architects back into history. The foreword by architect Beverly Willis describes the lack of women architects in much of written architectural history and the absence of women as role models in the profession. This book seeks to correct this by profiling some of the many women who shaped the field. A preface discusses the criteria for the selection of the 122 women profiled, including “design excellence and distinction, cultural and social progressiveness, and leadership in architectural practice.” The biographical entries are grouped into six generations; each section is accompanied by short introductory essays by well-known architectural historians, architects, and academics identifying the commonalities and differences across the generations. Subjects who are still living are interviewed, and the profiles feature several pages describing each architect’s education, career, and major projects, as well as photographs and drawings. Most of the architects practiced in the United States between 1881 and 2021, but there is respectable coverage of architects from across the globe.
VERDICT As a collection of women architects’ biographies, this is a worthwhile book for architecture collections. As an effort to reframe women’s impact, contributions, and participation in the profession of architecture, it is essential for collections that cover architecture or design.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing