HSPV Course Schedule as of April 12, 2023
Elective - HSPV 5210-001
This course is a survey of architecture in the United States. The organization, while broadly chronological, emphasizes themes around which important scholarship has gathered. The central purpose is to acquaint you with major cultural, economic, technological, and environmental forces that have shaped buildings and settlements in North America for the last 400 years. To that end, we will study a mix of "high-style" and "vernacular" architectures while encouraging you to think critically about these categories. Throughout the semester, you will be asked to grapple with both the content of assigned readings (the subject) and the manner in which authors present their arguments (the method). Louis Sullivan, for instance, gives us the tall office building "artistically considered" while Carol Willis presents it as a financial and legal artifact. What do you make of the difference? Finally, you will learn how to describe buildings. While mastery of architectural vocabulary is a necessary part of that endeavor, it is only a starting point. Rich or "thick" description is more than accurate prose. It is integral to understanding the built environment - indeed, to seeing it at all.
Cultural Landscapes and Landscape Preservation
Elective - HSPV 5380-401 / LARP 7380-401
The course surveys and critically engages the field of cultural landscape studies. Over the semester, we will explore cultural landscape as a concept, theory and model of preservation and design practice; we will read cultural landscape historiography and creative non-fiction; we will examine a range of types (national parks, community gardens, designed landscapes, informal public spaces), and we will map the alternative preservation, planning and design methods that ground cultural landscape studies practically. Readings, class discussions, and projects will draw on cultural geography, environmental history, vernacular architecture, ecology, art, and writing.
Elective - HSPV 5550-001
HSPV 5550/Introduction to Architectural Conservation Science is an introduction to the technical study of traditional building materials. The course focuses on the properties, durability, and especially weathering of these materials and the basic laboratory-based methods that can be employed for their study and characterization. Lectures and coordinated laboratory sessions introduce the nature, structure, composition, and deterioration mechanisms of a wide array of building materials including earth, stone, brick, terra cotta, concrete, mortars and plasters, metals, wood, and paints. The course provides a basic knowledge of the major building materials in use before the Second World War in industrialized as well as pre-industrial traditional contexts.
Preservation Through Public Policy
Elective - HSPV 5720-001
This course explores the intersection between historic preservation, design and public policy, as it exists and as it is evolving. That exploration is based on the recognition that a challenging and challenged network of law and policy at the federal, state and local level has direct and profound impact on the ability to manage cultural resources, and that the pieces of that network, while interconnected, are not necessarily mutually supportive. The fundamental assumption of the course is that the preservation professional must understand the capabilities, deficiencies, and ongoing evolution of this network in order to be effective. The course will look at a range of relevant and exemplary laws and policies existing at all levels of government, examining them through case studies and in-depth analyses of pertinent programs and agencies at the local, state and federal level.
World Heritage in Global Conflict
Elective - HSPV 5840-401 / ANTH 5840-401
Heritage is always political. Such a statement might refer to the everyday politics of local stakeholder interests on one end of the spectrum, or the volatile politics of destruction and erasure of heritage during conflict, on the other. If heritage is always political then one might expect that the workings of World Heritage might be especially fraught given the international dimension. In particular, the intergovernmental system of UNESCO World Heritage must navigate the inherent tension between state sovereignty and nationalist interests and the wider concerns of a universal regime. The World Heritage List has almost 1200 properties has many such contentious examples, including sites in Iraq, Mali, Syria, Crimea, Palestine, Armenia and Cambodia. As an organization UNESCO was born of war with an explicit mission to end global conflict and help the world rebuild materially and morally yet has found its own history increasingly entwined with that of international politics and violence.
What’s at Stake: Heritage Conservation in Asia
Elective - HSPV 5880-001
This course is a broad introduction to Heritage Conservation in Asia. Origin of many of the world’s oldest civilizations and five major religions, Asia today is also the most rapidly urbanizing region with the fastest-growing economy. What happens in Asia impacts the globe. Born of an historical construct and variously defined, Asia is home to vast cultural, religious, political, and geographic diversity. Through an assortment of case studies, we will examine the diversity of Asian heritage – culturally, geographically, typologically, and historically. We will ask how heritage has been conceptualised, by whom and to what effect, and consider the conditions that have structured those heritage constructs. To that end, we will delve into perceptions and values of authenticity, sovereignty, belief systems, ideas of the communal self, materials and construction technologies, regimes of expertise, and histories of heritage administration; all of which have informed local conservation practices. Where technical conservation capacity has been limited and governance weak, conservation has been dominated by transnational actors. Which raises ethical questions: what are the implications of these relationships and how have they shaped the built environment and the communities that live within them? Asian heritage professionals contend with deep histories of culture-defining empires, supra-national religious geographies, legacies of colonialism, modern independence movements, regional alliance-building, and the concomitant contemporary pressures of rapid urbanisation and climate change. What can we learn from what is happening in Asia and what is at stake? This course elaborates on conservation best practices discourses and methodological approaches and contributes to a global perspective on heritage.
Documentation, Research, Recording I
Elective - HSPV 6000-001
Wunsch & Ammon
The goal of this course is to help students learn to research and contextualize the history of buildings and sites. In order to gain first-hand exposure to the actual materials of building histories, we will visit our neighborhood research sites and several key archival repositories. Students will work directly with historical evidence, including maps, deeds, the census, city directories, insurance surveys, photographs, and many other kinds of archival materials. After discussing each type of document in terms of its nature and the motives for its creation, students will complete a series of projects that develop their facility for putting these materials to effective use. Philadelphia is more our laboratory than a primary focus in terms of content, as the city is rich in institutions that hold over three centuries of such materials; students will find here both an exposure to primary documents of most of the types they might find elsewhere, as well as a sense of the culture of such institutions and of the kinds of research strategies that can be most effective. The final project is the completion of an historic register nomination.
Historic Site Management
Elective - HSPV 6060-001
This course focuses on management, planning, decision making, and interpretation for heritage sites, from individual buildings and historic sites to whole landscapes and historic objects. Class projects ask students to analyze historic site operations and interpret objects. Course material will draw on model approaches to management, as well as a series of domestic and international case studies, with the goal of understanding the practicalities and particularities of site management. Topics to be examined in greater detail might include histories of historic sites, collections and conservation policies, interpretation, tourism, social justice, community engagement, strategic planning, in addition to fundraising and financial management. The course emphasizes making historic sites meaningful, relevant and sustainable in the present.
Digital Media for Historic Preservation
Core First Year - HSPV 6240-001/101
A required praxis course designed to introduce students to the techniques and application of digital media for visual and textual communication. Techniques will be discussed for preservation use including survey, documentation, relational databases, and digital imaging and modeling. This course requires a weekly laboratory period (1.5 hours).
10/24 to 12/21
Contemporary Design in Historic Settings
Elective - HSPV 6400-301
Contemporary design can contribute value and meaning to historic settings of any age or scale, from individual landmarks to landscapes and neighborhoods. In turn, engaging in a rigorous dialogue with history and context enriches contemporary design. This seminar immerses designers, planners and preservationists in the challenges of designing amid existing structures and sites of varying size and significance. Readings of source materials, lectures and discussions explore how design and preservation theory, physical and intangible conditions, and time have all shaped the particular realm of design response to historic context, as well as the political, cultural, and aesthetic environments that influence its regulation. Through sketch analytical exercises set in Philadelphia and outstanding case studies from around the world, students will learn to communicate their understanding of historic places, critique propositions for design intervention, and conceptualize a range of potential design responses. No prerequisites.
Material Histories and Ethnographic Methods
Elective - HSPV 6500-401 / CPLN 6830-401
What does it mean for students in the spatial disciplines (outside of anthropology, sociology, and history) to engage human subjects as primary sources of evidence? How can students in design, planning, and preservation both learn from the social sciences and transform classic ethnographic and historical methods to address the unique contexts of buildings, landscapes, and cities? This class focuses on how to conduct built environment research that views human subjects as repositories of knowledge and critical sources of primary evidence. We will explore research on the history of the built environment (dependent on maps, plats, documentation of sites) and human centered research as we design—collectively—best practices and spatially oriented interview and observation techniques. We will address multiple scales (sidewalks, commercial store fronts, post offices, neighborhoods) as we problematize human experience, perception, and knowledge of the built world.
Theories of Historic Preservation I
Core First Year - HSPV 6600-001
Theories of historic preservation serve as models for practice, integrating the humanistic, artistic, design, scientific and political understandings of the field. This course examines the historical evolution of historic preservation, reviews theoretical frameworks and issues, and explores current modes of practice. Emphasis is placed on literacy in the standard preservation works and critical assessment of common preservation concepts. In addition to readings and lectures, case studies from contemporary practice will form the basis for short assignments. Professional ethics are reviewed and debated. The instructor's permission is required for any student not registered in the Graduate Program in Historic Preservation. Note that the course is organized in two parts; the first half, on the basics of preservation theory, is taught in the fall semester (HSPV660) while the second half (HSPV661) takes place in the spring semester and engages advanced topics. Note: This course continues in the second half of the spring semester for another 0.5 CU. Prerequisite: Instructor's permission required for any student not registered in the Graduate Program in Historic Preservation.
8/29 to 10/23
Historic Preservation Studio
Core Second Year – HSPV 7010-201
The Preservation Studio is a practical course making architectural, urban and landscape conservation operations, bringing to bear the wide range of skills and ideas at play in the field of historic preservation. As part of the core MSHP curriculum the Studio experience builds on professional skills learned in the first-year core. The work requires intense collaboration as well as individual projects. The Preservation Studio centers on common conflicts between historic preservation, social forces, economic interests, and politics. Recognizing that heritage sites are complex entities where communities, cultural and socio-economic realities, land use, building types, and legal and institutional settings are all closely interrelated, the main goals of the studio are (1) understanding and communicating the cultural significance of the built environment, (2) analyzing its relation to other economic, social, political and aesthetic values, and (3) exploring the creative possibilities for design, conservation and interpretation prompted by cultural significance. Studio teams undertake documentation, planning and design exercises for heritage sites and their communities, working variously on research, stakeholder consultation, comparables analysis, writing policies and designing solutions. Students work in teams as well as on individual projects. Study sites will be announced in the fall before the semester starts.
Core Second Year – HSPV 7100-001
The Graduate Program in Historic Preservation's Thesis course is a two semester 2 CU capstone. The goal of the Thesis is demonstrated mastery of the research process by exploring a question of academic/professional relevance to the preservation field and presenting the results of the study in accordance with the highest standards of scholarly publishing. The Thesis spans the academic year, beginning with HSPV 710/Thesis I in the fall semester and continues in the spring with HSPV 711/Thesis II. Students are required to successfully complete 9-10 CUs (the first year of the curriculum) to qualify for Thesis. Dual degree students are expected to enroll in HSPV 710 before undertaking thesis studio in their respective dual program in their final year.
Conservation Seminar: Masonry
Elective - HSPV 7390-301
Ingraffia & Weisdock
This seminar will offer an in-depth study of the conservation of masonry buildings and monuments. Technical and aesthetic issues will be discussed as they pertain to the understanding required for conservation practice. Part 1 will address a broad range of materials and masonry construction technologies, and deterioration phenomena; Part 2 will concentrate on conservation methodology as well as past and current approaches for the treatment of masonry structures. The subject will be examined through published literature and case studies. Students will gain practical experience through lab and field exercises and demonstrations. The subject matter is relevant to interested students of conservation and preservation, architecture, landscape architecture, architectural history, and archaeology.