Refusal After Refusal

Adjustment Agency

Harvard Design Magazine

December 2018


“What if we began by admitting that we hated writing this? What if we said we did it because we needed the money? What if we acknowledged that we had fallen out of love with architecture and couldn’t remember why we loved it in the first place? That we had given up on building long ago because we had no interest in collaborating with developers, in designing money-laundering schemes or parking garages for foreign capital? And what if we told you that now we even found architectural discourse repulsive? That we had seen the logos for the oil companies emblazoned at the bottom of the biennial posters and couldn’t look away?1 That we had read the disinterest on the faces of the public and could relate? That we had watched academics lecture about labor practices while exploiting their assistants and overworking their students? That we had tried to warn each other about abusers and assaulters and were reprimanded for it by our heroes? What if we confessed that all this made us depressed, that we could barely summon the energy to get out of bed, let alone to work? What if we told you that we were beginning to think work itself was the problem?”