‘Part-Time Practice as before’: the career of Sadie Speight, Architect.’
Seddon, Jill (2007) ‘Part-Time Practice as before’: the career of Sadie Speight, Architect.’ In: Darling, Elizabeth and Whitworth, Lelsey, eds. Women and the Making of Built Space in England, 1870-1950. Ashgate, Aldershot, UK, pp. 141-160. ISBN 9780754651857
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This chapter presents new research and analysis on the career of the architect and designer Sadie Speight, a key figure in the dissemination of modernism in Britain and early exponent of the needs of the consumer of design, whose work until now has received little critical attention. In doing so it not only raises questions of Speight’s contribution but also of the limitations of existing historiographical discourse in the field. Using her example as a case study it progresses beyond the act of reclamation (important though that is), to analyse the role of gender in professional practice, particularly in relation to complex issues of creative partnership, and the processes of historiography. It readdresses with greater rigour issues initially raised in the exhibition and publication, Women Designing: redefining design in Britain between the wars (University of Brighton 1994). Specifically, it draws together methodological approaches derived from sociology, gender theory and architectural and design history. This later phase of the research was a direct result of the collaborative activities of the Gender and Built Space research group at the University of Brighton and was initiated by the presentation of a paper entitled ‘Modernist Living; Sadie Speight and The Flat Book ‘ at a closed seminar on the theme of Women and Built Space 1860-1960, at Nottingham University, 31 May- 2 June 2002.
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