Politics, City and Habitat in International Debates (1950-1970)
Parallel contributions of Nuno Portas and Giancarlo De Carlo
by Ilaria La Corte

The architectural debate generated internationally in the mid-1950s, with the critical review of the Modern Movement and its functionalist principals, revealed a renewed sensibility towards the urban and habitat issues and proposed a new system of integration between architecture and urban planning, recovering relations with the sociocultural contexts.

It is possible to retrace the main features of this international debate by following the professional trajectories of Nuno Portas, in Portugal, and of Giancarlo De Carlo, in Italy, whose works enable us to reflect on some of the issues closely related to the social and political role of architecture and architects, in the way as they have been developed in the second half of the 20th century.

For this purpose, three topics were chosen — Politics, City and Habitat —, which, in addition to being the main focus of the Modern Movement criticism, define the sphere of action within which, between the 1950s and 1970s, Giancarlo De Carlo and Nuno Portas moved within their own work with ideas, debates and projects, using the multi-faceted role of architects-urban planners, researchers and university teachers, always with a mutual reflection between the project’s theoretical and practical work.

Ilaria La Corte is invited assistant professor at Politecnico di Milano and PhD candidade at FAUP – Porto University School of Architecture, where she is currently developing her doctoral thesis “PolĂ­tica, Cidade e Habitat no Debate Internacional (1950-1970). Os contributos paralelos de Nuno Portas e Giancarlo De Carlo”.