Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture


LA 4501 Historic Preservation and Commemoration in the Built Environment

This course broadly covers the history, theory, and practices of historic preservation, with a particular focus on the historical geographies of the American South. Students explore how to identify, investigate, and give voice to the historical narratives of spaces, places, and memories embedded in the built environment. To do this, we will develop diverse definitions of historical significance, survey various archives of information, and experiment with different written, visual, and material practices for spatializing memory.

The class also questions how preservation and acts of memorialization produce public memories, and the politics that surround how the past is remembered. Lastly, it covers the standard practices of professional preservation planning through the National Park Service Heritage Documentation Programs, which includes the Historic American Building Survey, Historic American Landscape Survey, and the Historic American Engineering Record.

Working in collaboration with photography students as partners, landscape architecture students must select three sites within the East Baton Rouge Parish to research and document. Students must choose a building, a landscape, and a structure. For each site students will work together to conduct in-depth research and produce visual evidence. Partners work closely with each other sharing their knowledge, skills, and understanding so that each party feels confident in working in new ways. This means landscape architecture students should make photographs as well, and photography students should also be conducting research.

Class is in conjunction with Art 4941 Special Topics in Photography.