Literary intervention in architecture - the making of Burns cottage as a writer’s house
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The concept of writers’ houses is a modern invention. Along with the growth of literacy popularity and the rise of modern writers, whose origins are no more of privileged class, their houses start to be pilgrimage destinations and places of interest. Most writers’ houses are protected for their connections with the writers rather than their architectural significance. Hence it is common to see that the presentation of the house emphasises this aspect more than other, although in some cases the writer’s history with the house is relatively short. Through the making of writers’ houses, we see how people’s expectation towards a place is affected by their perception of favoured history. This research aims to discover/ reflect on what the expectation towards a writer’s house has been made of, and how the expectation has led to spatial operations on the house in different times. Burns Cottage, the birthplace of the eighteenth-century poet Robert Burns in Alloway, is the earliest writer’s house developed in Scotland. As the development of the Cottage has undergone a long span of more than two and half centuries, it is a great example to demonstrate how people’s perception of a writer’s life and works has been transformed into their understanding of the house, and how the understanding has led to spatial operations developed with the spirit of Enlightenment, that of Romanticism, and that of modern era.