Course Code: 
ARCH 435
Course Type: 
Area Elective
Course Language: 
Course Coordinator: 
Courses given by: 
Course Objectives: 
The aim of this course is to discuss the epistemological and theoretical origins of the concept of utopia, and to examine the change that the concept has undergone from the antiquity to the post-industrial society utopias in relation with architectural examples.
Course Content: 

This course discusses the different approaches of utopia with an inter-disciplinary perspective and examines the concept in accordance with spatial, social, cultural and temporal contexts. 

In this course, architectural utopias of antiquity, Renaissance, 19th century, 20th century and post-industrial society are examined, and 21st century utopian approaches are re-evaluated with a critical methodology. 

 The main outcome of this course is to provide to students to gain the ability of to evaluate the utopian discourses in the context of space-city together with architectural theories within inter-disciplinary approaches. This course is suitable for undergraduate and master students.

Course Methodology: 
1: Lecture, 2: Question-Answer, 3: Discussion, 4: Seminar, 5: Project, 6: Teamwork; 7:Technical excursion
Course Evaluation Methods: 
A: Testing, B: Jury, C: Homework, D:Quiz, E:Internship

Vertical Tabs

Course Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes Program Learning Outcomes Teaching Methods Assessment Methods
  1. Ability of analyzing the literature on theoretical knowledge of architectural utopias.
1, 3, 5 1, 2, 3, 4 A, C, D
  1. Ability of gaining epistemological and theoretical origins of utopia and re-evaluate these knowledges with a multidisciplinary approach
1, 3, 5 1, 2, 3, 4 A, C, D
  1. To improve critical thinking skills on 21st century architectural utopias with architectural theories
1, 3, 5 1, 2, 3, 4 A, C, D

Course Flow

Week Topics Preparation
1 Introduction: the structure of the course and a short history of architectural utopias  
2 Epistemological origins of the concept of utopia and discussions on "definition of utopia"  
3 Discussions on "potential definitions of utopia" by the concepts of "desire, hope, contumasy, rationalism, modelling, universality, alternative order, idealism, totalitarian"  
4 Discussions on "potential definitions of utopia" by the concepts of "society engineering, anti-libertarianism, city, stability, progressivism, equity"

Origins of utopias

5 Utopias in antiquity

Utopias in Enlightment Period

6 19th century Utopias  
7 Mid-term  
8 Modernism and 20th century utopias  
9 Utopias in post-industrial period

- Degenerated utopias

- Ecotopias

10 Utopias in post-industrial period

- Dystopias

- Heterotopias

-Hyper Buildings

11 Discussions: Student presentations on critical reviews of 21st century utopianism and architectural theories -1  
12 Discussions: Student presentations on critical reviews of 21st century utopianism and architectural theories -2  
13 Discussions: Student presentations on critical reviews of 21st century utopianism and architectural theories -3  
14 Discussions: Student presentations on critical reviews of 21st century utopianism and architectural theories -4  

Recommended Sources

Lecture Notes Students are expected to take notes and provide related books. The articles will be provided as pdf files by instructor.
Other Sources Bacon, F. (2010). The New Atlantis. Orgeon: Watchmaker Publishing.

Bauman, Z. (2004). Wasted Lives. Oxford: Polity Press.

Brinton, C. (1967). Utopia and Democracy. In Utopias and Utopian Thought. Boston: Beacon Press.

Ceylan Baba, E. (2020). İdeal Kent Arayışında Mimari Ütopyalar, (Seeking the Ideal City in Architectural Utopias)- in Turkish, YEM Yayın, ISBN: 978-625-7008-02-0.

Davis, J. C. (1983). Utopia & The İdeal Society. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Foucault, M. (2006). “The Utopian Body” in Sensoruium: Embodied Experience, Technology, and contemporary Art, ed. Caroline Jones, Cambridge MIT Press

Foucault, M. (2008). The Birth of Biopolitics. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

Harvey, D. (2015). Umut Mekanları. İstanbul: Metis Yayınları.

Kateb, G. (1975). Utopia and Its Enemies. London: Collier-MacMillan.

Kolakowski, L. (1982). The Death of Utopia Reconsidered. The Tanner Lectures on Human Values. içinde Utah: University of Utah Press.

Kumar K. Ütopyacılık. )- in Turkish, Ankara: İmge Kitabevi; 2005.

More, T. (2003). Utopia. London: Penguin Classics.

Mumford, L. (1922). The Story of Utopias. New York: Boni & Liveright.

Riesman, D. (1947). Some Observations on Community Plans and Utopia. Yale Law Journal , 57 (2).

Sargent, L. T. (1994). Three Faces of Utopianism. Utopian Studies , 5 (1).

Sargisson, L. (2009). The Curious Relationship Between Politics and Utopia. The Use Value of Social Dreaming. içinde Oxford: Peter Lang.

Material Sharing

Documents The articles will be provided as pdf files by instructor.
Assignments 1 student presentation
Exams 1 Midterm, Final Exam


Mid-term Exam 1 %25
Project (Assignment)    
Field survey    
Seminars/presentations 1 %25
Final Exam (Final Project) 1 %50
Contribution of Final Examination to Overall Grade   %50
Contribution of In-term Studies to Overall Grade    %50
Total   100
Course Category  Expertise/Field Courses

Course’s Contribution to Program

Program Learning Outcomes 
Contribution Level

 (1: lowest,                               5: highest )

1 2 3 4 5
1 Critical thinking skills: Ability to develop clear and open questions, use abstract ideas to express ideas, evaluate opposing views, reach to the well-examined results and test them with similar criteria and standards         x
2 Communication / Graphic communication skills: Ability to formally express each stage of planning and design process with various techniques including hand-drawings and information technologies to create appropriate presentations; to have an ability of a complete and accurate technical description and documentation of the project          
3 Research skills/ Ability of Utilization from Examples: Ability to obtain relevant information, assessment, recording and apply during the architectural processes; the ability to discover examples that are appropriate to program and form, concerning the composition and development of architectural and urban projects         x
4 Design skills: Understanding the creation, development and implementation processes of two and three dimension design, architectural composition, and visual perception and organization in urban design, ability to apply basic architectural principles in building, interiors and layout          
5 World architecture: Comprehending the rules of world  architecture, landscape and urban design, and also the climatic, technological, socio-economic and cultural factors which shape these principles         x
6 Regional Architecture / Cultural Diversity: Comprehending the effects of national traditions and historical heritage in national and vernacular architecture including local architecture, landscape and urban design.          
7 Cultural Heritage and Conservation: Having awareness of the protection of historical areas as well as the basic principles for the documentation of historical monuments and buildings for the preparation of their restoration projects.          
8 Sustainability: Conservation of artificial sources which also include naturally and culturally significant buildings and spaces, regarding the role of sustainability in the architectural and urban design decisions and understanding the formation of healthy buildings and establishments            
9 Social Responsibility: Comprehending  the needs, behaviors, social and spatial patterns which characterize different cultures          
10 Nature and Human: Understanding the interaction between physical environment and humans          
11 Geographical Conditions: Ability to design settlement and building considering the natural and artificial properties of site            
12 Life safety: Understanding the basic principles of life safety systems with an emphasis on the topic of emergency exits          
13 Structural systems: Understanding the behavioral principles of standing structures with vertical and horizontal forces and the development and application of contemporary load-bearing systems          
14 Building Physics and Environmental Systems: Understanding the basic principles of lighting, acoustics, air-conditioning and energy use in the design of environmental systems.          
15 Building Shell Systems: Understanding the materials and basic design systems and correct application types of building shells          
16 Building Service Systems : Understanding the basic design principles of building service systems composing,  plumbing , electric , vertical circulation, communication, security and fire safety systems          
17 Construction Materials and Applications: Understanding the principles and standards of building materials and components in terms of production and applications.          
18 Integration of Building Systems: Ability of evaluation, selection and integration of building service systems, environment, security and building shells in building design.          
19 Program Organization and Evaluation: The ability to evaluate an architectural project with a comprehensive program, according to the design criteria concerning the client, user requirements, appropriate precedents, space and equipment requirements, site conditions and related laws and standards          
20 Comprehensive Project Development: Ability to improve and evaluate an architectural project with comprehensive program from graphical design to system details (Structural and environmental systems, security, etc.)          
21 Control of Building Cost: Within the framework of the design project; understanding the basics of finance, building economy and cost control          
22 Architect-Employer Relationship: Understanding the responsibility of analyzing the requirements of the owner and customer as an architect          
23 Teamwork and Collaboration: Ability to enhance individual skills and take on different roles through identification and work as a member of the design team , in conjunction with other environments          
24 Project Management: Understanding the duty of tasking, contracting, personnel management, consultants, project delivery methods and service agreement           
25 Application Management: Understanding issues of office organization, business planning, marketing, financial management, project management, risk mitigation, the basic principles of leadership and the profession of issues affecting the globalization, outsourcing, project delivery, expanding practice that support the profession of architecture           
26 Leadership: Understanding the pioneer role of the architect in the process of project and design for contract administration          
27 Legal Rights and Responsibilities: Understanding the legal responsibilities of the architect in building design and construction such as public health, safety and well-being, property rights, zoning and housing regulations, user rights which affect architectural studies          
28 Architectural Practice / Professional Development: Understanding the role of the internship in professional development, and  mutual rights and responsibilities of the employer and the trainee          
29 Professional Ethics: Understanding the ethical issues that are related to the professional adjudication in architectural design and practice          


Course Duration (14 weeks x total work hours) 14 3 42
Workload outside the classroom (research and reviews) 14 4 56
Presentation/Seminars 1 12 12
Midterm Exams 1 3 3
Field survey       
Final exam (Final Project) 1 3 3
Total work load      116
Total work load / 25     4,64
ECTS of the course     5