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Download Architecture and Authority in Japan by William H. Coaldrake PDF

By William H. Coaldrake

Eastern structure is among the so much encouraged manifestations of eastern civilizations. Arguing that architectural kinds are greater than simply symbols of the powers that created them, William Coaldrake explores the symbiotic dating among structure and authority all through jap heritage. Exploring key constructions and the way they've been used as energetic conveyors of strength, Coaldrake relates structures to the political targets and spiritual ideals of the key historic eras in Japan.

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These issues lead naturally to a broader consideration of the ways in which the building in its parts and as a whole served the ends of its sponsors. Symbols of high status, great wealth, and overarching authority become apparent. It is then possible to identify the architectural vocabulary of authority and follow its evolution as time and circumstances themselves changed. While benefiting from the tradition of awareness of the relationship between architecture and authority in the West, we should at the same time be cautious in using contemporary Western standards of judgement as the measuring-rod for Japanese historical architecture.

I believe that if this house were blown down by a great wind, and we were to rebuild it by replacing the rotten pillars, discarding worn-out rafters, and adding new wood, it would become a beautiful building…. 17 These examples of architectural metonymy may be of Japanese origin but they are also in keeping with the usage of other ancient and medieval civilizations such as the title ‘pharaoh’, which meant literally ‘great house’ in ancient Egypt, and ‘palace’ to refer to the royal family in England.

In this way passage through a hierarchically ordered sequence of gateways becomes a carefully calibrated enactment of ritual order within the hierarchy of authority. 13 The use of a series of fences to protect the inner compound reflects the early Japanese practice of constructing a succession of fences around centres of local power. A typical example is the use of multiple palisades around the eighthcentury fortification of Tagajo, located to the immediate northeast of the modern city of Sendai.

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