Europe French Infrastructure

The Trottoir Roulant in 1900 Paris World’s Fair: controlling a spatial division

The expansion of colonies overseas and the growth of the colonial culture continued to shape the ego of Parisiens and the metropole of Paris to be a world centre and a global nexus in 1900[1]. As the last in the five most important[2] World’s Fairs held in Paris, the Paris exposition of 1900 presented a […]

British French North America

Le Château Frontenac: Revealing Historical Contention

Le Château Frontenac, a Canadian pacific Railway hotel in Quebec City constructed in 1892, is often revered for being the heart of Old Quebec. Although the hotel nowadays is considered to be luxurious and picturesque, it has not always been thought of so highly throughout the past. What tends to be overlooked are the details […]

Asia Empire French Geography Religious Typology

The Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica of Saigon (1877 – 1880) – Colonial Justification Through Religion

The Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica of Saigon, constructed between 1877 and 18801, can be considered a garish example of French colonial architecture located in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The religious structure, officially, the Cathedral Basilica of Our Lady of The Immaculate Conception was commissioned by Bishop Lefevre and designed by Jules Bourard.2 One will note […]

Europe French Institutional/cultural/religious

Bibliothèque Sainte-Geneviève: Iron and Knowledge as Materials of Colonization

Henri Labrouste’s Bibliotheque Sainte-Genevieve is a building of conflicting ideas. On its classical stone exterior the names of 810 authors inscribe a catalog of the most prominent philosophers, scientists and authors of the time. Within its walls, these same author’s works are housed amidst a modern forest of skeletal iron and glass. Just as Labrouste’s […]

Europe French

Palais Garnier (Paris Opera House): The Symbol of Imperial Power & Cultural Prestige

The Paris Opera House was designed and completed by Charles Garnier between 1861 and 1875.[1] Dripping in opulence and grandeur, ‘Palais Garnier’ is the quintessential depiction of France’s Imperial Power acquired during the Second Empire rule; representing the growing bourgeoisie population, Napoleon III’s political ambitions both domestically and internationally, and a legacy of symbology which […]

Domestic/residential French North America Public/government Race Settler colonialism Uncategorized

Sans-Souci Palace, 1813: Architecture of Liberation in the French Atlantic

Introduction The Caribbean is a region historically notable for its legacy of colonization and slave labour. As early as the 16th century enslaved Africans were shipped to islands in the West Indies to work on plantations owned and operated by Europeans. In particular, France claimed a substantial amount of territory for its monarchy, and took […]


Palais des Machines in 1889 World’s Fair: Materializing A New Notion

“Public opinion had so long ignored the art of iron construction [that people were not prepared to recognize or evaluate a work of the strength and boldness of the Galerie des Mahinces]. I remember very clearly a hallucinatory passage through the brightness of the nave in a travelling crane, above whirlpools of twisting reptilian belts, […]

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