Different concepts of the machine are pursued in essays on Fritz Lang's Metropolis, Alfred Jarry's pataphysical machines, and cosmological and political orders in sixteenth-century utopias. Cross-cultural tensions are examined in essays on the Christian appropriation of Aztec symbolism, and on Jesuit perspectives in an imperial Chinese garden in Beijing. Architectural origins and education are revisited in essays on fire and language in Vitruvius, on storytelling by Spanish theorist Juan Caramuel de Lobkowitz, and on the role of history in the design of the Prato della Valle, a public square in Padua. Phenomenal experience is the focus of essays on light and stone in the Gothic church of Saint-Denis, and on bodily movement through the ancient Palace of Minos at Knossos in Crete. Tensions in architectural representation are investigated in essays on the influence of Villard de Honnecourt on drawings by William Burges in Victorian England, and on Stendhal's curious narrative drawings in his book Vie de Henry Brulard. Contemporary beliefs are scrutinized in an essay that uses psychoanalytic theory to examine the modern concept of sustainability.
Alberto Perez-Gomez holds the Saidye Rosner Bronfman Chair of the History of Architecture at McGill University. He is the author of several books, including Built Upon Love: Architectural Longing after Ethics and Aesthetics. Stephen Parcell is professor