WRIGHT, Patrick

On Living in a World of Facades: From Prince Potemkin to the Berlin Wall and the Truman Show

Series: Public Occasion Agency
Date: Tuesday 8 February 2011
Time: 18:00
Venue: Lecture Hall
Running time: 90 mins

This lecture will describe how  theatrical techniques have been employed to shape public and political reality in the modern era.  It will consider three aspects of theatrical technique and their extension into  the wider world: the growing symbiosis between acting and political leadership in the contemporary media landscape; the way in which the iron curtain, initially a metal barrier fitted into theatres as an anti-fire device, was used to define relations between blocs, states and nations in the twentieth century; the extent to which theatrical ideas of scene-building have been put to use in politics, architecture and international media reportage extending up through the war in Iraq.

Patrick Wright is a writer and broadcaster.  He is Professor of Modern Cultural Studies at Nottingham Trent University, and a fellow of the London Consortium. His first book, On Living in an Old Country (1985), was a critical examination of the rise of ‘heritage’ as a theme in British public life, and he has since written A Journey Through Ruins: the Last Days of London (1991), The Village that Died for England (1995), Tank: the Progress of a Monstrous War Machine (2001), Iron Curtain: From Stage to Cold War (2007) and, most recently, Passport to Peking (2010), which traces the attempt, made by various British architects, artists, writers and scientists, to open an independent British relationship with the People’s Republic of China in 1954.

All lectures are open to members of the public, staff and students unless otherwise stated.

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The Architectural Association receives Taught Degree Awarding Powers by the Lords of Her Majesty’s Most Honourable Privy Council.

The Architectural Association (AA), the oldest independent school of architecture in the United Kingdom, is pleased to announce that it has been granted the power to award its own degrees. As of 1 October 2019, the AA has the right to establish new academic programmes and degree awards and is working to create some of the world’s most pioneering courses in architecture to shape and build the future.

Taught Degree Awarding Powers (TDAP) give UK higher education institutions the right to award bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Prospective students worldwide can apply to the AA Foundation Course (Foundation Diploma), Experimental Programme BA(Hons), Diploma Programme (MArch), and nine taught postgraduate programmes encompassing History and Critical Thinking in Architecture (MA), Projective Cities (Taught MPhil) and Sustainable Environmental Design (MSc/MArch), amongst others.

AA Director, Eva Franch said, ‘since our founding in 1847 we have never ceased to create new horizons, institutionally and academically. This is a significant milestone for the AA and demonstrates how we have grown and progressed as an institution that has always valued independence. Receiving TDAP marks a new era for our institution; these are exciting times for the AA. The process has required considerable work from all members of staff and students. I would like to take this opportunity to credit them for this major achievement’.

President of the AA Council, Victoria Thornton added, ‘the TDAP process has recognised our strong governance, academic standards, scholarship and teaching as well as the environment supporting the delivery of taught higher education programmes’.

The School’s application for Taught Degree Awarding Powers was supported by the Architects Registration Board, the Royal Institute of British Architects and The Open University.