Now more than ever, as the housing marketing remains in jeopardy and class disparaties are growing larger, our nation needs thought-out, well-planned solutions to our predicament. That need may be addressed by Democratic Architecture. Donald MacDonald, in his latest book, offers viable & affordable solutions to our country’s ongoing housing problems. Democratic Architecture deals with tough urban problems and raises questions not just about housing policy, but about larger political and ethical issues. It provides a critique of the various approaches to post-war housing and then puts forth a number of innovative solutions to the problem. Many of the proposals are practical designs for low- and lower-middle-income housing, with an emphasis on increasing opportunities for home ownership. They include a variety of detached homes, multiunit buildings, and some alternative types of housing for people whose lifestyles diverge from the mainstream. With more than 100 black & white and color photographs and illustrations, Democratic Architecture is a book that clearly lays out solutions to housing crises that we see occurring all too often, both here in the United States and all over the world. Now in its third edition, Donald MacDonald offers a brief foreword: “Reflecting on what has passed in the sixteen years since the first edition of Democratic Architecture was published, it’s clear to me that the message remains as true as ever. As we work toward creating a more just and humane society, embracing and celebrating the diversity of our shared experience, our design and architecture must similarly embody the best aspects that define our democracy. To do anything less would, at the least, squander a tremendous opportunity and, perhaps more significantly, diminish the potential of our contributions as citizens and professionals.”
A graduate of Columbia University, MacDonald has developed a global understanding of the great need for housing all over the world. He has travelled to over eighty countries, in many cases, to observe the housing conditions that exist in both democratic and totalitarian government systems. He has passionately lectured in many of these countries about the ideas expressed in this book to encourage the stakeholders to embrace all forms of living spaces, from the smallest to the more conventional western norms.