Introduction: Irish housing design at the crossroads

Gary A. Boyd, Brian Ward, Michael Pike

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


This chapter provides the introduction to the book Irish Housing Design 1950-1980: Out of the Ordinary. As such it explores the architectural, social and technological contexts from which the projects featured in the book emerged. The period under discussion was a significant one in the development of housing and its design in both the Irish state and elsewhere. It represented a high point in the construction of an international welfare state project, a moment where the idea that architecture could and should shape and define community and social life was not yet considered problematic. This coincided with a consolidation in the development and dissemination of what has been termed ‘situated’ modernism (Goldhagen 2000, 2001), where the abstract, functionalist treatises of the interwar period generally broadened to allow regional inflections and other criteria to (re)emerge. In Ireland, these conditions corresponded with some shifts in the economic and, traditionally very conservative (and rurally orientated), social realms: the end of economic protectionism, the embracing of a free market and a widening and increasingly secular
cultural purview.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIrish Housing Design 1950-1980
Subtitle of host publicationOut of the Ordinary
EditorsGary Boyd, Brian Ward, Michael Pike
PublisherRoutledge Taylor & Francis Group
Number of pages17
ISBN (Print)9781138216426
Publication statusPublished - 11 Dec 2019


  • situated modernism
  • architectural design
  • housing
  • international precedents
  • Welfare State
  • Catholic Church
  • landscape


Dive into the research topics of 'Introduction: Irish housing design at the crossroads'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this