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What is Feminist Architectural Practice in the UK Today?

Part 2 Dissertation 2021
Anna Harris
University of Liverpool | UK
The built environment is inherently political. Space is created through existing power systems; a patriarchal, racist, and classist society therefore produces built environments that reinforce these inherent biases. Scholars and practitioners of architecture have studied how design processes in the UK tend to reflect societal inequalities, and particularly how built forms ignore the needs of women, reproducing patriarchal values.

As feminist architectural movements gain traction across the UK, however, little attention has been given to how such movements reflect on the production of space. This research explores how feminist discourse in architecture has evolved, and how its shifts have affected professional practice. I first review literature to detail how feminist spatial theories have developed since the 1970s, intertwining with broader waves of feminism. Drawing on interviews with feminist architects, I then establish the impact fourth-wave feminism is having on architecture. I conclude by setting out key points of a manifesto for fourth- wave feminist architectural practice.

Anna Harris

Francesca Piazzoni
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