Architecture at the ends of the world: Korean and Western architectural traditions in comparison
Jung, Ji Suk
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Architecture is not simply building. It has been an intellectual effort from the ancient period onwards. Western architecture is defined by a variety of knowledge systems and disciplines. The architectural approach in Korea and on the whole in South Eastern Asia is totally different. The principles of building became accumulated, but they have not been subject to independent studies. Architecture was a part of the practices of the belief and philosophical systems and their manners and customs. In Korea, there were nobles and monks who were well-versed in the ideas and theories of domestic architecture, but their intellectual tradition have not been institutionalized in specialized areas such as done in the West. At the same time, Western architecture tends to be based on ideals of form in relation to changing materials, construction technologies, mechanic production and industrialization. In order to examine the principles of Korean traditional architecture, there needs to be known how Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhists thoughts are reflected in architecture since these philosophical systems shaped architectural approaches. This thesis aims to survey Korean Architecture from the perspective of local traditions of building and conceptualization.
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