Jessica Sewell



University of California, Berkeley, PhD; Parsons School of Design and the New School for Social Research, MA in Architecture and Design Criticism; Harvard and Radcliffe Colleges, BA


Jessica Sewell’s research focuses on the relationships between gender and architecture, urban space, and material culture. Her book Women and the Everyday City: Public Space in San Francisco, 1890-1915 (University of Minnesota, 2011) explores how gendered public spaces were imagined, built, and used between 1890 and 1915, making visible the interdependence between changes in the everyday lives of women, the urban cultural landscape, and gender ideology. Her current research looks at the question of men in private space, focusing on the bachelor pad as a site of masculine fantasy and an urbanized counterpoint to the suburban home in the 1950s-60s United States. She is also author of the app Exploring Suzhou, which provides a cultural landscapes tour of the Chinese city of Suzhou. This app is being used to enrich the teaching in large-enrollment classes in Architecture and Urban Planning and Design at Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University. Her research has been supported by fellowships and grants from The Institute for Advanced Study, Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University, the Humanities Institute at Boston University, the Huntington Library, and the Bancroft Library of the University of California at Berkeley.


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