We are honored that two Princeton University Press (PUP) books have been awarded prizes by the Society of Architectural Historians (SAH), announced during this week’s annual SAH conference. Ünver Rüstem’s Ottoman Baroque: The Architectural Refashioning of Eighteenth-Century Istanbul is winner of the Alice Davis Hitchcock Award for the most distinguished book in architectural history written by a North American scholar. Despina Stratigakos’s Hitler’s Northern Utopia: Building the New Order in Occupied Norway is winner of the Spiro Kostof Book Award for interdisciplinary studies of urban history that make the greatest contribution to an understanding of the growth and development of cities.
Ottoman Baroque breaks new ground in the study of Islamic visual culture in the modern era and offers a persuasive counterpoint to Eurocentric accounts of global art history. The first English-language book on the topic, Ottoman Baroque establishes a compelling reassessment of a building style frequently dismissed by modern observers as inauthentic and derivative. Ünver Rüstem, assistant professor of Islamic art and architecture at Johns Hopkins University, shows how between 1740 and 1800 the Ottomans consciously co-opted European forms to craft a new, politically charged, and globally resonant image for their empire’s capital, and reclaims the label “Ottoman Baroque” as a productive framework for exploring the connectedness of Istanbul’s buildings to other traditions of the period. Hailed as “groundbreaking” and “fascinating” by the Art Newspaper, Ottoman Baroque received a 2018 SAH/Mellon Author Award.
Drawing on extraordinary unpublished diaries, photographs, and maps, as well as newspapers from the period, Hitler’s Northern Utopia tells the chilling, little-known story of how Nazi architects and planners envisioned and began to build a model “Aryan” society in Norway during World War II. Between 1940 and 1945, German occupiers transformed Norway into a vast construction zone, with ambitions to extend the Greater German Reich beyond the Arctic Circle and turn the Scandinavian country into a racial utopia. A haunting vision of what might have been, Hitler’s Northern Utopia was described as “a fascinating archival study” (Times Literary Supplement) and “a remarkable achievement” (the Telegraph) and was shortlisted for the Wallace K. Ferguson Prize by the Canadian Historical Association. Author Despina Stratigakos, a vice provost and professor of architecture at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York, has written for Architect Magazine, BBC History Magazine, Places Journal, and the Atlantic. She is the author of Hitler at Home and, with PUP, Where Are the Women Architects?
This year marks the third time that a PUP book has been awarded the Alice Davis Hitchcock Award, given annually by the SAH since 1949. Nancy Steinhardt’s Chinese Architecture: A History won the award in 2021, and Richard Krautheimer’s Rome: Profile of a City, 312–1308 won in 1980. This is the first time a PUP book has been awarded the Kostof Book Award, given annually by the SAH since 1993.