American Building, Vol. 2: The Environmental Forces That Shape It

James Marston Fitch
Few books have influenced the field of architecture more than American Building: The Environmental Forces That Shape It. Originally published in 1947, it has emerged as a classic work on the relationships among buildings, their inhabitants, and the environment. Now comes the first major revision in over twenty-five years, bringing this essential book completely up to date for a new, more environmentally aware generation of architects and designers. In this superb volume, James Marston Fitch provides a fundamental theory of buildings. "The ultimate task of architecture," he writes, "is to act in favor of human beings: to interpose itself between people and the natural environment in which they find themselves, in such a way as to remove the gross environmental load from their shoulders." Fitch systematically examines the various aspects of the environment which buildings control for human habitation--air, temperature, light, and sound, even space, time, and gravity. He draws on scientific research to probe deeply into these problems and he sets out the most practical solutions to these and other issues in clear, precise language. Moreover, his analysis runs to the external environment as well, as he explores the impact of buildings on the outside world. American Building: The Environmental Forces That Shape It broke new ground in the school of thought now known as "green architecture"--the philosophy of designing buildings that require a minimum amount of energy and resources to erect and operate. For this new edition, architect William Bobenhausen has included new information on sustainable design and the latest construction technology, up-to-date statistics, case studies, photographs, and illustrations. This revised edition promises to keep this work at the forefront of our thinking about design and the natural world.

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