Hic et ubique terrarum: the radical architecture of Italian universities of the 1970s

HIC ET UBIQUE TERRARUM: LA ARQUITECTURA RADICAL DE LA UNIVERSIDAD ITALIANA DE LOS SETENTA

Since the Middle Ages, European universities have woven a network of exchanges with the city as their setting and the first university cities as the destination of students’ pilgrimages. The inherent ubiquity of the model was soon compromised by the progressive autonomy of the university, which gradually became an entity isolated from its urban context. The Anglo-Saxon campus became the paradigm of this isolation, a symbol of class differentiation. With the gradual evolution from universities only for the elites to universities for the masses in the post-World War II period, the democratic institutions were committed to opening up higher education to society as a whole. The exponential growth of the student population made it necessary to multiply public initiatives for the construction of new universities. This article analyses the case of the new Italian universities of the 1970s, which sought to restore the lost relationship between university and city, and to recreate the original ubiquity of the former through a diffuse network of facilities and services which, together with transport and information networks, aimed to structure the territory and guarantee the universal dissemination of knowledge.


“Hic et ubique terrarum: la arquitectura radical de la universidad italiana de los setenta / the radical architecture of Italian universities of the 1970s,” EN BLANCO 31 (2021): 130-42.

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