“Identity is passé.” It was 2002, and the words stung. As an undergraduate applying to doctoral programs, I was searching for the vocabulary I needed to talk about the issues in design that were important to me. Identity, I determined, was one of them. The words came from a senior scholar I respected at a program I was pursuing, and suddenly what I envisioned as my academic trajectory seemed trivial and faddish. However, in the current political climate, with the 2015 Supreme Court ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges, the recent campaign of the first female candidate of a major party for the U.S. presidency, increased xenophobia and Islamophobia, and the continued visibility of grassroots movements like Black Lives Matter and the 2017 Women's March on Washington, it has become clear that identity is anything but passé.

Mario Gooden takes on the issue of identity in architecture and wrestles with...

You do not currently have access to this content.