Boundaries introduces a call for papers on the following subject:
Architecture and Utopia
In this new era of disorientation and social hardship it isn’t pure formalism to rethink utopia as a form of search, anticipation and projection in the realm of architectural and urban possibilities. Thomas More’s book, Utopia, presented the modern-form of utopia with the idea of a “no-place-land” (ou-topos in Greek) or a “good place” (eu-topos) both introducing “the place of felicities” in an ideal society. Since Thomas More, two forms of utopia have emerged as a critical response to society and to image a better future: one of these is thinking urban society from the present, as an alternative, better life in our real cities (such as Le Corbusier with La ville radieuse) or new urban societies out of our realities – such as Tony Garnier with la Cité industrielle or Yona Friedman with La ville spaciale). But the point is the same: community is at the centre of utopia.
Architecture used to play a fundamental role in utopia by the way it materializes its form, for example with Fourier’s phalanstery or by the way Robert Owen projected a Village scheme, which will be later developed with the city-garden of Ebenezer Howard. However, the XXIst century has reduced the importance of community for an individualistic form of living. In that context, are we still able to imagine new utopias ? Is the Utopic project able to become a reference and/or a goal for architect and architecture, or is it used as an instrument to attain a more pragmatic goal? Or are we in a post-utopia era, less optimistic, where architects cannot approach architecture with the social frame of utopia, leading to anti-utopia (distopia) and self-reference?
All kinds of approaches to this topic are welcomed, and must be focused on the XXIst century. Papers can be case studies oriented, or methodological and/or theoretical in focus.
The deadline for submission is August 5, 2013.
Contributors are invited to submit a title, an abstract (from 300 to 350 words), three images and a short biography stating their affiliation and professional interests (maximum 100 words).
Official language for paper presentation is English. The style, grammar and phrasing should be edited by a person with an excellent command of English and a good understanding of architectural terminology. All submission of abstracts should be sent by email to
The papers will be selected by the editorial board and subjected to evaluation with the blind peer review system. The authors will receive an answer before August 10, 2013.
Articles should be sent to the editorial board, in their definitive form and with illustrations (free from reproduction rights), before August 21th, 2013.
Final articles length will be between 450 and 800 words, notes and bibliography included. Contributions must be original and should not have been previously published, even in part. All articles must be illustrated (at least ten images, drawings, sketches, renders or other). For further information and guidelines, see : www.boundaries.it or write to
Boundaries is a quarterly international journal on contemporary sustainable architecture, with texts in English and Italian. The aim of the project in Boundaries is to offer a critical view of the architectures that today face, in many different ways, the challenges of contemporariness and sustainability intended as a balance between problems of cultural, environmental, economic and social nature.