Social Media, Gender and Architectures Canon


  • Harriet Harriss Royal College of Art




content of architecture, decolonisation of the curriculum, hidden curriculum, gender and representation, social media, fourth wave feminism


Decolonising the curriculum demands curricula and pedagogic change across all academic disciplines. Whereas the contents of architecture may well be epistemologically diverse, the recognized producers of architecture are determinedly less diverse resulting in calls to reconsider who gets to determine what architecture contains. To challenge this, a broader body of knowledge inclusive of gender, class and race is needed, one that responds to both nascent change and persistent instability, and yet remains ‘’live’ — able to adapt to new authors and new audiences as they arise. To generate this knowledge, how we capture and collect it needs to be reimagined too, and the neutral normative, westernized and gendered ideologies and values that persist within architecture’s canon, directly confronted. As both the #BlackLivesMatter and #MeToo movement has demonstrated, social media has provided a rapid response platform through which knowledge is created, communicated and contested. This presentation critically reflects upon the problems and possibilities underpinning three, social-media situated initiatives that sought to repatriate women’s contribution to the canon of architecture. It describes, (1) the production of a crowd-authored list of women architecture writers (2) crowd-sourcing an alternative list of women architects eligible for the #RIBAgoldmedal by Part W and, (3) a crowd-funded, ‘women architects of the world’ Top Trump card game.

How to Cite

Harriss, H. (2019). Social Media, Gender and Architectures Canon. EAAE Annual Conference Proceedings, 80–83.



Author Biography

Harriet Harriss, Royal College of Art

Dr. Harriet Harriss (RIBA, PFHEA) is a qualified architect, a Reader in Architectural Education and leads the Post-Graduate Research programme in Architecture at the Royal College of Art in London. Her teaching, research and writing focus upon pioneering new pedagogic models for design education (as captured in Radical Pedagogies: Architectural Education & the British Tradition) and for widening participation in architecture to ensure it remains as diverse as the society it seeks to serve (a subject she interrogates in her book, A Gendered Profession).


Grady, Constance. ‘The waves of feminism, and why people keep fighting over them, explained’,Vox, July 20, 2018

Zuckerberg, Donna. Not All Dead White Men: Classics and Misogyny in the Digital Age. Harvard University Press, 2018

Women Write Architecture:,

Part W #RIBAGoldMedal:

Top Trumps: