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Despina Stratigakos: Interventions in the Archive14:54

"Voices from Places Journal" is a series of films highlighting contributors to Places whose scholarship provides relevant perspectives on the future of architecture, landscape, and urbanism.

Despina Stratigakos, a writer, historian, professor, and Vice Provost for Inclusive Excellence at the University at Buffalo, speaks about her interest in unwritten and unknown histories, and considers how the contents of archives reflect what has been excluded. She examines why omissions have occurred and proposes that interventions have the power to alter the archive, and thus build new disciplinary knowledge. Regarding her book Hitler at Home, which was excerpted in Places, Stratigakos discusses the significance of discovering the presence of power in unexpected places — in this case the propaganda role played by Hitler’s domestic spaces in the rise of Nazism. She also emphasizes the importance of seeing the unseen in architectural and urban history through her research on Nazi-occupied Norway. Discussing her writings on the neglected histories of women architects, Stratigakos describes public edit-a-thons that have written women into digital archives, including Wikipedia.

Despina Stratigakos is a writer, historian, and professor. Her research explores how power and ideology function in architecture, whether in the creation of domestic spaces or of world empires. She is the author of four books. Hitler’s Northern Utopia: Building the New Order in Occupied Norway (2020) examines how Nazi architects and planners envisioned and began to construct a model “Aryan” society in Norway during World War II. Where Are the Women Architects? (2016), confronts the challenges women face in the architectural profession. Hitler at Home (2015) investigates the architectural and ideological constructions of the Führer’s domesticity. A Women’s Berlin: Building the Modern City (2008), which traces the history of a forgotten female metropolis, won the German Studies Association DAAD Book Prize and the Milka Bliznakov Prize. Stratigakos is also the editor of A Cultural History of the Home in the Modern Age (Bloomsbury 2020). She currently serves as the University at Buffalo’s Vice Provost for Inclusive Excellence.

Crew Credits:

Creator and Executive Producer - Hernán Díaz Alonso
Producers - Marcelyn Gow/Reza Monahan

Story Producer - Marcelyn Gow
Editors - Mariana Curti/Reza Monahan

Additional Images Provided by Despina Stratigakos

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