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The fall of man in public

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‘Can the critique and proposal be combined?’ asked the RCA last night for the third in the series of its BABYLON:DON debates. A stellar question, Astragal thought, worth serious consideration. Would the scheduled participants – Richard Sennett and FOA’s Farshid Moussavi – come up with a New Year revelation? The assembled audience waited with bated breath. So it came as quite a surprise when Alejandro Zaero Polo – the half of FOA that hadn’t double-booked the diary – announced that he had no idea what the debate was about. But even in ignorance of this critical piece of information, was it a good idea to unveil FOA’s proposal for eight towers in Dubai while sharing a platform with the author of The Fall of Public Man? Sennett looked dismayed as he pronounced judgment: ‘I forgive you Alejandro – it will pay your mortgage.’

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