Demolition figures: the appearance and expression of the topman and mattockman in LCC contracts, 1941–1951

Beech, N. 2012. Demolition figures: the appearance and expression of the topman and mattockman in LCC contracts, 1941–1951. Architectural Research Quarterly. 16 (3), pp. 245-252.

TitleDemolition figures: the appearance and expression of the topman and mattockman in LCC contracts, 1941–1951
AuthorsBeech, N.
Abstract

The Rescue man was not only working on the incident, he became a part of it […] he was the vaguely apprehended shape which suddenly appeared from the surrounding chaos as a human being […].

This paper explores a very particular form of building activity: demolition work. My aim is to show that the peculiarities of demolition work challenge how construction history contends with certain ontological and epistemological problematics. In the first instance, I am concerned with how the historical activity of demolition produces subjects which are held in distinct social relationships and material processes. In the second instance, I am concerned with how knowledge is produced in those relationships and processes, and further how knowledge of those relationships and processes might be made historically available. These questions are developed through an examination of archival material related to the clearance of the South Bank in the late 1940s in preparation for the Festival of Britain Exhibition and the Royal Festival Hall. The archived contracts are shown to have a specific status and effect for such an enquiry.

JournalArchitectural Research Quarterly
Journal citation16 (3), pp. 245-252
ISSN1359-1355
YearSep 2012
PublisherCambridge University Press
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1017/S1359135513000092
Publication dates
PublishedSep 2012

Related outputs

Ground exploration: producing everyday life at the South Bank, 1948-1951
Beech, N. 2014. Ground exploration: producing everyday life at the South Bank, 1948-1951. in: Stanek, L., Schmid, C. and Moravánszky, A. (ed.) Urban revolution now Farnham Ashgate. pp. 191-206

‘Et tu, Peter?’ Some kinds of real–(or not so) politik at the Festival of Britain
Beech, N. 2012. ‘Et tu, Peter?’ Some kinds of real–(or not so) politik at the Festival of Britain. Journal of Architecture. 17 (5), pp. 747-762.

Introduction: telling places
Beech, N. 2008. Introduction: telling places. Multi: The RIT Journal of Plurality and Diversity in Design. 2 (1), pp. 5-17.

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