Interrogating The Architectural Conscience


  • Omeima Osman


This paper explores the increasingly intrusive aspect of ‘ugliness’ marring the architectural urban built environment today focusing on the underlying connotations of the inherent mindset. Questions arise as to why, who or what is responsible and what can be done about it? A wide literature review, addressing this issue from varying standpoints, is presented here as supporting evidence of this persistent trend of ‘ugliness’ defacing our cities and negatively affecting the quality of life since the mid-19th Century and the time of Ruskin. Findings confirm a direct link between the visible aspect of ugliness and the mindset of society. Modernity, tradition, the role of the architect, architecture and the dilemmas facing the architectural practice today are visited. Issues of ethics, morality, aesthetic values, and general wellbeing appear pertinent. Maintaining individual identity appears as a valid need. It is surmised that there is no singular all-encompassing solution to suit all but that each society, through its unique cultural and geographic environment, potentially holds within its own heritage the remedy; an example being the Muslim Society which has a rich heritage and is governed by well documented principles. The aim of this paper is to continue to emphasize the urgency of the problem and proposes that the route to salvation starts from within; in the mind. Attainment of knowledge and revitalizing traditional values are seen as conducive to a practical solution. This is especially significant in the current globalization and technological advancement.




How to Cite

Omeima Osman. (2020). Interrogating The Architectural Conscience . Journal of Architecture, Planning and Construction Management, 3(1). Retrieved from