Research

  • Bond: Race and the Modern City
  • GRANTEE
    Brian D. Goldstein
    GRANT YEAR
    2018

J. Max Bond, Jr. (at left) with architects Donald Ryder and Nathan Smith, ca. 1969. Courtesy of Davis Brody Bond.

Bond: Race and the Modern City is the first book-length study of the architect J. Max Bond, Jr. Bond, the preeminent African-American architect in the postwar United States, was a civil rights activist, innovative educator, and designer of major commissions across scales. Yet his work remains little known. Indeed, throughout his life Bond occupied a unique position as both central figure and outlier, professionally successful but always one among a tiny percentage of black American architects. By tracing this tension across key sites in Bond's life and work, including Cambridge, Paris, Kumasi, New York, and Washington, DC, this project uses the biography of one exceptional architect to chart an alternate history of architecture and urbanism in the modern and postmodern eras. In doing so, Bond rethinks much broader histories too, of the fundamental and often surprising ways that race has shaped American places.

Brian D. Goldstein is an architectural and urban historian and assistant professor of architectural history at Swarthmore College. His research focuses on the intersection of the built environment, race and class, and social movements, especially in the United States. His writing includes the book The Roots of Urban Renaissance: Gentrification and the Struggle Over Harlem (Harvard, 2017) and articles appearing in the Journal of American History, Journal of Urban History, and the edited volumes Reassessing Rudolph (Yale School of Architecture, 2017) and Summer in the City: John Lindsay, New York, and the American Dream (Johns Hopkins, 2014). He is the recipient of fellowships and awards from the Society of Architectural Historians, Society for American City and Regional Planning History, and Center for the Humanities at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Goldstein received his PhD from Harvard University and taught previously at the University of New Mexico and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.