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Original Essays | September 15, 2014

Lois Leveen: IMG Forsooth Me Not: Shakespeare, Juliet, Her Nurse, and a Novel

There's this writer, William Shakespeare. Perhaps you've heard of him. He wrote this play, Romeo and Juliet. Maybe you've heard of it as well. It's... Continue »
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    Juliet's Nurse

    Lois Leveen 9781476757445

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Unpacking My Library: Architects and Their Books


Unpacking My Library: Architects and Their Books Cover

ISBN13: 9780300158939
ISBN10: 0300158939
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: None
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

What does a library say about the mind of its owner? How do books map the intellectual interests, curiosities, tastes, and personalities of their readers? What does the collecting of books have in common with the practice of architecture? Unpacking My Library provides an intimate look at the personal libraries of twelve of the worlds leading architects, alongside conversations about the significance of books to their careers and lives.


Photographs of bookshelves—displaying well-loved and rare volumes, eclectic organizational schemes, and the individual touches that make a bookshelf ones own—provide an evocative glimpse of their owners personal life. Each architect also presents a reading list of top ten influential titles, from architectural history to theory to fiction and nonfiction, that serves as a personal philosophy of literature and history, and advice on what every young architect, scholar, and lover of architecture should read.


An inspiring cross-section of notable libraries, this beautiful book celebrates the arts of reading and collecting.


Unpacking My Library: Architects and Their Books features the libraries of:


Stan Allen

Henry Cobb

Liz Diller & Ric Scofidio

Peter Eisenman

Michael Graves

Steven Holl

Toshiko Mori

Michael Sorkin

Bernard Tschumi

Todd Williams & Billie Tsien


Peter Eisenmans Recommended Titles:


Robert Musil, The Man Without Qualities

Le Corbusier, Vers une Architecture

Thomas Pynchon, Gravitys Rainbow

Robert Venturi, Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture

Rem Koolhaas, Delirious New York

Jacques Derrida, Of Grammatology

Andrea Palladio, The Four Books on Architecture

Walter Benjamin, Illuminations

James Joyce, Finnegans Wake

William Faulkner, Light in August


About the Author

Jo Steffens is director of Urban Center Books and editor of Block by Block: Jane Jacobs and the Future of New York City.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Elizabeth L, February 11, 2010 (view all comments by Elizabeth L)
This book is both beautiful look at and amazing to read (not unlike the books that are its subject). I could spend hours pouring over these intimate portraits of architects' shelves and the books that inhabit them.
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Product Details

Steffens, Jo
Yale University Press
Essay by:
Benjamin, Walter
Benjamin, Walter
Photoessays & Documentaries
Best books
Architects - Books and reading -
Photo Essays
Photography-Anthologies and History
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
24 b/w + 284 color illus.
5.5 x 8 in 1.15 lb

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Architecture » General
Arts and Entertainment » Architecture » Reference
Arts and Entertainment » Architecture » Theory
Arts and Entertainment » Photography » Anthologies and History
History and Social Science » Economics » General
Hobbies, Crafts, and Leisure » Antiques » Books
Reference » Books on Books

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Product details 192 pages Yale University Press - English 9780300158939 Reviews:
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