Restored view of the Temple of Zeus at Olympia, Greece. Source: Wilhelm Lübke, Max Semrau: Grundriß der Kunstgeschichte. Paul Neff Verlag, Esslingen, 14th edition 1908.
Design, Demos, Dialectics

Max Raphael’s Theory of Doric Architecture


  • Patrick Healy Delft University of Technology





Max Raphael, Demos, Dialectics, Doric, Design Social


The main focus of this paper is to examine the analysis offered of the Temple of Zeus at Olympia by Max Raphael in his study dedicated to the remains of the temple. The temple of Zeus at Olympia is often cited as the canonical example of Doric temple architecture and Raphael examines how a particular design can have such far ranging influence, to which end he elucidates the relationship of design to the activity of a participatory and democratic process specific to the Greek polis. By bringing to bear a highly dialectical analysis of the various forces at play in both construction and the elaboration of the temple, Raphael advances a brilliant interpretation which takes account of the social, spiritual and material dimensions at play and dissolves older academic understandings of the achievement of ‘classical art’.

How to Cite

Healy, P. (2018). Design, Demos, Dialectics: Max Raphael’s Theory of Doric Architecture. Cubic Journal, 1(1), 108–123.



Author Biography

Patrick Healy, Delft University of Technology

Patrick Healy is a senior researcher at Delft University of Technology, Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, and Professor of Inter-disciplinary research for the Free International University, Amsterdam. For recent publications see


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