Instructor: Nader Sayadi
Sections: TR 12:00-12:50, Location: AUP 179
Assignment 1: Recreating the past
Assignment 01 challenges you to tell us stories of the Washington Park neighborhood from decades ago. Your challenge is to paint a picture of this neighborhood as it was in the past. Do it in ways that give contemporary residents a sense of pride, belonging and identity. Your stories should not only recreate lost histories but also invigorate public life and induce creative possibilities in the present. Remember, all stories need not be positive and good; neighborhoods have sad and negative histories too. The emphasize of our stories might be on the concept of Cultural Heritage or “what is the legacy of physical artifacts and intangible attributes of a group or society that are inherited from past generations, maintained in the present and bestowed for the benefit of future generations.” This includes both tangible and intangible cultural heritage.
Students will work in teams on assigned blocks as their projects. Each project will be discussed with teams. Projects should be pinned up before the discussion section and all team members should be prepared to talk about their work's progress. Participation in discussions (presentation of the team's project and comments on other projects) will be considered as a part of students attendance in discussion sections. Appropriate projects will be uploaded on www.arch302.weebly.com.
This assignment consists of two main steps. First, you are expected to gather related data to provide raw material for the next step. Second you use the data to tell a story or connected stories about the neighborhood; however data gathering might not be limited to the first week or just the beginning of the whole process of story-telling. It is important to keep in mind that this is not a linear process. During the second phase, you may possibly find new materials which give you another perspective two the neighborhood or show you another hidden corner. Your works will be in two main parts:
week 01 - Gather data
This assignment should use local archives to find information about the neighborhood. Use newspapers and archival photos to discuss how old streets looked like. Sonborn maps and other historic maps will help you to imagine the alteration of neighborhood, mostly its physical aspects such as development, decay, construction, demolition, and addition of structures. Census data can help you to know more about people who lived in the nighborhood. For instance, the 1940 United States Census data gives you these information for a particular place/street: address, home owned or rented (if owned, value and if rented, monthly rent), whether on a farm, name, relationship to head of household, sex, race, age, marital status, school attendance, educational attainment, birthplace, if foreign born, citizenship, location of residence five years ago and whether on a farm, employment status, if at work, whether in private or non-emergency government work, or in public emergency work, occupation, industry and class of worker, weeks worked last year, wage and salary income last year. And historic photographs and other illustrated materials tell you about all different aspects of the place. You might not limit yourself to these. Feel free to add to these but the required materials and their sources are:
Week 02 – Tell the story
Put all these together to tell stories of the neighborhood. Focus on particular streets and compile data you have to tell a coherent story or related multiple coherent stories. It is a visual and textual story at the same time, so you should at least write few paragraphs to add them to your images, maps, and etc. While you are working on your stories add more material from last week or new founded one to develop your story.
Examples below are useful to look at:
Grading and criteria:
Graphics, presentation (3 points)
Writing quality (3 points)
Historic data/materials/resources (4 points)
Stories – visual/textual (4 points)
Total (15 points)
Appendix (more explanation):
Based on the UNESCO definition, tangible heritage “includes buildings and historic places, monuments, artifacts, etc., which are considered worthy of preservation for the future. These include objects significant to the archeology, architecture, science or technology of a specific culture.” This international institution also defines the intangible cultural heritage “as the practices, representations, expressions, as well as the knowledge and skills (including instruments, objects, artifacts, cultural spaces), that communities, groups and, in some cases, individuals recognize as part of their cultural heritage. It is sometimes called living cultural heritage.” examples of intangible cultural heritage includes: Oral traditions and expressions, including language; Performing arts; Social practices, rituals and festive events; Knowledge and practices concerning nature and the universe; traditional craftsmanship. As the UNESCO explains “the intangible cultural heritage is transmitted from generation to generation, and is constantly recreated by communities and groups, in response to their environment, their interaction with nature, and their history. It provides people with a sense of identity and continuity, and promotes respect for cultural diversity and human creativity.”
To find out what might be considered as cultural heritage of the Washington Park neighborhood, we might be looking for “valuable” historical features of the place. Bernard Frieden categorizes cultural heritage values as emotional values (wonder, identity, continuity, respect and veneration, symbolic and spiritual), cultural values (documentary, historic, archaeological and age, aesthetic and architectural values, townscape, landscape and ecological, technological and scientific), and use values (functional, economic (including tourism), social (also including identity and continuity), educational, ans Political). You should tell the stories of the neighborhood in the way in which they represent the values of the place in the past to connect it to the present life of the community.
One might categorizes the available data in three types and of course more types consist of these three as mixed-types. You may find materials which basically represent psychical aspects, social aspects, and landscape of the Washington Park neighborhood in history. Physical aspects include but are not limited to buildings, walkways, streets, and spatial interrelationships between them in the past. Social aspects can be seen two sub-categories of organizations, groups, and individuals. landscape of the neighborhood include but not limited to any kind of non-human living entities such as plants and animals as natural aspects and also physical geographical aspects such as body of water and topography.
This categorizations is just useful for a better understanding of different realms. A neighborhood should not be deducted and fragmented to these aspects. It is a complex phenomenon, so you should combine all these aspects in the second step of this assignment to tell a coherent story. This is also true about the historic materials. For instance, on one hand a historic photograph can tell you about different aspects of the place at the same time, but on the other hand a historic map may tell you more about physical aspects rather than social. Remember that in the analysis process of these materials, the main concern is alteration and change. This means that you need to compare all these aspects of the neighborhood in different periods of time to show how it is changed in history. After you recognized some historical mile-stones, you should try to explain how they represent cultural tangible and/or intangible cultural heritage of the place. This will be a story of Washington Park neighborhood.
Sanborn maps (at least two different periods):
Manuscript census data, city directories:
Historic photographs, Historic maps (including bird-eye view of Milwaukee), other historic texts and documents:
Sample of works:
FIND MORE RESOURCES ON THE "RESOURCES AND LINK" SECTION OF THE WEBSITE.