Home: A Short History of an Idea

Front Cover
Penguin Books, 1987 - Architecture - 256 pages
24 Reviews
Walk through five centuries of homes both great and small—from the smoke-filled manor halls of the Middle Ages to today's Ralph Lauren-designed environments—on a house tour like no other, one that delightfully explicates the very idea of "home."

You'll see how social and cultural changes influenced styles of decoration and furnishing, learn the connection between wall-hung religious tapestries and wall-to-wall carpeting, discover how some of our most welcome luxuries were born of architectural necessity, and much more. Most of all, Home opens a rare window into our private lives—and how we really want to live.

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Review: Home: A Short History of an Idea

User Review  - Brian - Goodreads

Fascinating look into the history and future (as predicted from the 80s) of home and interior design. Takes a peak into seemingly mundane aspects of construction, culture and decor, which ultimately makes you think twice about how the status quo became just that. Read full review

Review: Home: A Short History of an Idea

User Review  - Daimon - Goodreads

The subject was fascinating at times - how the concepts of "home" and "comfort" have changed over time with technology and culture - but the writing made it kind of a slog. There was no flow to the telling, and in quite a few places I had to re-read to get the information to stick. Read full review


Chapter Four

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About the author (1987)

Witold Rybczynski of Polish parentage, was born in Edinburgh in 1943, raised in Surrey, and attended Jesuit schools in England and Canada. He received Bachelor of Architecture (1960) and Master of Architecture (1972) degrees from McGill University in Montreal. He is the author of more than fifty articles and papers on the subject of housing, architecture, and technology, including the books Taming the Tiger, Paper Heroes, The Most Beautiful House in the World, Waiting for the Weekend, and Looking Around: A Journey Through Architecture (all available in Penguin), and most recently, City Life. He lives with his wife, Shirley Hallam, in Philadelphia and is the Martin and Margy Myerson Professor of Urbanism at the University of Pennsylvania.

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