Imperial Gothic

  • May 21, 2013
Imperial Gothic

Alex Bremner has just published his book on the Gothic revival movement in architecture and its impact around the world.

A groundbreaking book on the global reach and influence of the Gothic Revival movement in architecture and its close links with 18th- and 19th-century British cultural politics has been published by a Gates Cambridge alumnus.

In his new book Imperial Gothic, Alex [George] Bremner, now a senior lecturer in architectural history at the University of Edinburgh, talks about how, by the middle of the 19th century, the movement had been transformed by architects and theorists into a serious scholarly endeavour, connecting it to notions of propriety and 'truth', particularly in the domain of religious architecture.

Alex writes about how these developments coincided with the continued expansion of Britain’s empire, including a renewed urgency by the English Church to extend its mission beyond the British Isles. Through his focus on religious buildings, he examines the reinvigoration of the Church of England’s colonial and missionary agenda and its relationship to the rise of Anglican ecclesiology, revealing the nature and extent of building activity that occurred across the British world.

Alex [2001] was in the first intake of Gates scholars in 2001 and helped to set up the Gates Scholars' Alumni Association. He did a PhD in the history and theory of Victorian architecture at Cambridge and was the first ever Gates scholar to be awarded a PhD. His thesis focused on London as an imperial city during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and how imperial power was expressed through architecture and urban environments. He says his research led to an interest in understanding the role that religion played in constructing colonial identity.

*G. A. Bremner, Imperial Gothic: Religious Architecture and High Anglican Culture in the British Empire, c.1840-1870 is published by Yale University Press, 2013.
 

Latest News

A spiritual awakening in verse

Arazi Pinhas’ new book is inspired by a profound process of spiritual development that he underwent at Cambridge which taught him about himself and his place in the world. Wisdom of a Mystic: Spiritual Wisdom from a Kundalini Awakening is described as an invitation “to look inward, to the depths of consciousness, as a way […]

$75,000 grant for technology to assist people with disabilities

A Gates Cambridge Scholar and his colleague have been awarded a prestigious grant from Facebook Reality Labs to Dr Pradipta Biswas and Professor Yogesh Simmhan have been awarded a $75,000 grant from Facebook Reality Labs for their proposal on ‘privacy-respecting augmented reality[AR]/virtual reality[VR] to enable differently abled people in multi-cultural societies. The grant was the […]

Gut bacteria links to immune responses in the brain

Bugs in the gut may hold the key to protective immune measures in the brain which could have implications for diseases such as Parkinson’s and multiple sclerosis, according to a new study led by Gates Cambridge Scholar Zachary Fitzpatrick. A paper based on his PhD research has recently been published in Nature and it highlights […]

Exploring the social barriers to take-up of green technology

How can rural communities be encouraged to take up green energy solutions? A new study co-authored by Gates Cambridge Scholar Ramit Debnath investigates the social barriers to uptake of household appliances fuelled by green energy. Based on research on more than 14.5K households in rural communities in Rwanda, the study, published in Renewable Energy, found […]