Tall stories

24th March 2000 at 00:00
ADVENTURES IN ARCHITECTURE SERIES: JOE AND THE SKYSCRAPER. By Dietrich Neumann. WHERE WE LIVE. By Achim Bode, Michael Frey and Andreas Linke. Prestel pound;9.95 each.

New York's Manhattan skyline has become an increasingly powerful icon for the progress of Western civilisation. We take its soaring architecture for granted as the concentrated thrust of its skyscrapers is mirrored in cities around the world.

But in the early decades people marvelled as its buildings rose heavenwards, miracles of engineering or Towers of Babel, whichever way you looked at it, to salute a ravening capitalism.

How were they made and what of the people who built them? Joe and the Skyscraper (pictured) is a wonderful retelling of the creation of the Empire State Building between 929 and 1931 through the story of Joe Carbonelli, a 16-year-old "water boy" whose job was to carry drinking water up to the workers who developed a remarkable head for heights.

This is an elegant book, which vividly conveys the drama of this particular piece of history.

Where We Live is similarly alive with fascinating nuggets of architectural narrative and the wonders of the built environment. On a whistle-stop tour of indigenous habitations - in caves, up trees, on stilts - clever parallels are drawn with the architecture of our modern cities, showing how architects have ingeniously combined anthropological observation with art and engineering.

This highly informative series turns architecture into an adventure with enormous child-appeal.


Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now