Doriane Meyer, B.Arch./BUD, M.A., Ph.D.

Doriane Meyer's picture
Postdoctoral Associate

Doriane Meyer is a Brazilian architect and urban designer with a Ph.D. in architecture from the University of Kansas. She is currently a Postdoctoral Associate at the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition, and she is also teaching at the School of Architecture. Her expertise is the analysis of the effects that African slavery left in the built environment with emphasis in the inequality existent in contemporary architecture.

Her research interests are topics connected to segregation, race, inequality, and spatial justice that analyze the relationship between power and resistance and how people behave in different built environments, from plantation slavery to modern urban landscape.

She is currently working on a book project entitled Spaces of Power and Resistance in the Bahian Recôncavo Plantations, in which she investigates the roots of social disparity in Brazilian society and the influence of space on it. She uses the evidence to show that the growth of informal settlements in Brazilian cities and the placement of the maids’ rooms on the back of the residences are results of the continued reproduction of power relations with its genesis in colonial plantations.

Some of her other research areas include comparing the inequalities in the urban design of cities. In “Landscape of Inequality in American Cities,” she is investigating the influence of urban design on the segregation of Black and Latinx communities in U.S. cities. Using Space Syntax and urban theories to compare and analyze the urban design of American cities, this investigation argues that despite recent efforts to improve the urban inequalities, this still affects racial minorities in U.S. cities and many times the urban design contributes to it. In another project, she will evaluate the formation and growth of informal urban architecture in different parts of the world, such as the United States’s Colonias, Latin America’s favelas, Turkey’s Gecekondu, and Africa’s Bidonvilles.

In Brazil, she did many residential, commercial, and institutional projects. She also worked for the Brazilian government designing dwellings for low-income families, developing popular cooperative projects for new neighborhoods, and urbanizing the living space of underserved communities.

Gilder Lehrman Center
Acad Year (Current): 
Gilder Lehrman Center