WIT Press
Tradition Today

Tradition Today

Continuity in Architecture & Society

Authors: R. Adam, Robert Adam Architects, London, UK and M. Hardy, INTBAU, London, UK


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In January 2002, after a two year gestation period, the International Network for Traditional Buildings, Architecture and Urbanism (INTBAU) was launched. To celebrate the launch, a conference was held to debate the place of tradition in modern society. While INTBAU was specifically concerned with building and urbanism, if tradition was indeed relevant then it must have a place throughout society. The conference forms the basis of this book.

It is an important feature of traditions that they adapt and change. So, while change accelerates so should the adaptation of traditions. If we rely on tradition for the transmission of culture, then the adaptation of traditions is a matter of importance to all of us. If change occurs without the transmission of culture, then culture itself dies; culture cannot be created anew every day. The evolutionary nature of tradition is something often ignored by supporters and opponents alike. It is important that history – that which measures our distance from the past – is not confused with tradition – the past living through us.

The papers presented in this book discuss these points and many others are a fascinating miscellany. With contributions ranging from the practical to the academic these papers can leave no doubt about the continued role and significance of tradition, the passion of those who understand its relevance and the dangers inherent in its denial.

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