Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Two ways of meaning in architecture : "conceptual meaning" and "pragmatic meaning"
Author: Ye, Xi
ISNI:       0000 0004 8501 8516
Awarding Body: Newcastle University
Current Institution: University of Newcastle upon Tyne
Date of Award: 2018
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
What makes a building meaningful seems indeterminate. The major aim of this thesis is to discuss two different ways to have meaning in architecture and how the two ways of meaning are related, in order to clarify the significant roles they play in the design. There is a way that a building can be imbued with the meaning intended for it by the architect, as a result of his/her effort to find a design concept by encountering multiple problems - the function of the building, the complex circumstances of the site, the culture, and the political force, in interaction with his/her personal philosophies and aesthetic preferences. This kind of meaning that comes from the architect's mind will be referred to as "conceptual meaning" in this thesis. However, once a building has been constructed and people get to use the space, these users come to have their own understandings of the building, and this is another way in which the meaning could arrive. This way of meaning that grows out of the experience in actual spaces will be referred to as "pragmatic meaning" in this thesis. The first chapter of the thesis tries to clarify the definition of "conceptual meaning" and "pragmatic meaning". This is followed by case studies of the culture-led iconic building in chapter 2, aiming to explain that the two ways of meaning are inter-filtrated to each other, so that "pragmatic meaning" also plays an important role. Chapter 3 goes further in exploring how the two ways of meaning are associated and reconfirms the significance of "pragmatic meaning", by looking at a deconstructive project, attempting to clarify the way in which "pragmatic meaning" is contained in "conceptual meaning" in this case. Chapters 4 focuses more on the design concepts where pragmatic aesthetics is embodied, thus attempting to provide architects alternative ways of approaching the design. It sees traditional Chinese philosophies are connected with pragmatic aesthetics, and discusses the ways of finding concepts from the encounter with traditional culture with the exemplification of two Chinese projects. Finally, the concluding chapter reclaims the design attitude this research advocates - that architecture is not only about written concepts, and concepts should not only refer to visual effect or symbolic meaning, but rather "pragmatic meaning" is the thing that makes a building essentially meaningful.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available