Misprision of Precedent: Design as Creative Misreading



Literary critic Harold Bloom’s concept of misprision, although difficult to translate into architectural terms, offers valuable insights into one way that architects critically engage with other designers’ works through a process of creative misreading. Bloom stakes out a theory that governs both criticism and production. Misprision offers critics and historians another tool with which to explain the influence of one architect on another. The concept’s pedagogical value includes a broadened understanding of the roles that precedent studies play in the design studio.