what do you think future peoples will deduce about our societies based on these surviving structures?
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I think #2 makes an excellent point - a lot depends on what happens in the next 2000 years. Not to be too pessimistic, but humanity as a species might have killed itself off by then due to environmental changes or war. However, I guess we can only assume that the people in the future will study architecture and the ways that it reflects our thoughts, beliefs, values and approaches to life. What they will study may well be the kind of buildings that are celebrated today, if only because so much literature and work will be written about them.
In my opinion, there will be at least two factors that determine what buildings from our time will be studied in 2000 years. First, it will depend on what buildings are left standing. Second, it will depend on what scholars wish to know.
The first of these is pretty obvious. To us today, the Empire State Building or the Palace of Versailles may seem like buildings that are important and worthy of study. But what if those buildings don't happen to survive for 2000 years? There were surely plenty of Roman buildings that didn't survive to the present that could have been studied.
Second, if scholars are looking for engineering marvels, then they will need to look at the big skyscrapers and things like that. But if they are looking for more about our daily lives, they will have to study whatever remains of our houses and neighborhoods.
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