• Citizen Architects: How Hands-on Building in Architectural Education Shaped a Nation
    Anna Goodman
    University of Texas Press, 2025
    Anna Goodman

Katherine Camp Mayhew, "Children build the Clubhouse at the University of Chicago Laboratory School," 1899. Courtesy Cornell University Library, Rare and Manuscript Collections

Citizen Architects explores how architecture students have been deployed in full-scale building programs in the United States from the 1920s to the early 2000s. The project’s deep archival research—including its eighty historical photos—show architects hard at work reaffirming their position as arbiters of the common good even as they maintain existing class hierarchies and political orders. The images in the book help demonstrate how these pedagogical practices relate to the social, institutional, and political landscapes in which they take place. Citizen Architects argues that these programs provide a space for design professionals to rearticulate their identity as social progressives when their legitimacy is challenged by grassroots movements. The images used to document programs show how architects have depicted the job site as a space of exception. Here, inexpensive land, lack of regulation, and frank need have allowed them to build in ways that other settings would not allow.

Anna Goodman is an assistant professor in the school of architecture at Portland State University. She received her PhD and master’s degree in architecture from the University of California, Berkeley, and a bachelor’s degree in architecture from Rice University. Goodman’s work focuses on the politics of architectural education and practice, unpacking how the field has participated in twentieth-century United States social welfare policy. She is particularly interested in how discourses and aesthetics of labor have contributed to architects’ place within progressive social movements. In her research, Goodman draws upon literature on welfare, humanitarianism, and citizenship to rethink how socially-engaged and community-driven practices are enacted by architectural professionals. Her work has been published in peer-reviewed journals spanning the fields of architecture history, design education, and urban history including the Journal of Architectural Education, the Journal of Urban History, the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Traditional Dwellings and Settlements Review, and Dialectic.