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Karel Teige. Nejmensi byt / Karel Teige. Vaclav Petr, 1932

“Teige, the Czech poet, artist and architect, developed during the 1920s from an engagament with Dada, Constructivism and Purism into a hard functionalist. Like the Russian functionalists and men like Hannes Meyer, Teige advocated the construction of collective housing in which  private spaces would be reduced to the minimum and the functions of eating, recreation, washing and childcare would be grouped together in units of various size. His political engagement as a comunist comes through clearly in his writings, notably in his Marxist defence of Modernism, Architektura a tridní boj (Architecture and the Class Struggle), which was published in one of the magazines he edited, Red (1931). As Stalinism began to reject Modernism in favour of Socialist Realism and a populist return to classical styles, Teige struggled to combine his loyalty to the party with his commitment as a Modernist architect. Refusing to give in to the party line, he wrote a series of articles (some of them reproduced in this book) using arguments framed in Marxist dialectical materialism against the Stalinist line. By the time this book was published, Teige was under strong attack from the members of his own party, while still proposing his radical Marxist attack on 'liberal' proponents of Modernism in Europe.”

Christopher Wilk, ed. Modernism: designing a new world. London: V&A Publishing, 2006 (p. 187)

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