Solomon and Worrall's "21st Century Architecture" looks at the city of Tokyo as a unique phenomenon shaping new directions in design. Each dynasty is characterized by it's own material identity: Meiji was brick, Showa concrete, and Heisei is glass. The authors were interviewed in advance of their lecture last night in Shinjuku, and contrasted western architecture, which is characterized by striving for permanence, with a Japanese approach to architecture as performance. See a link to the interview under Architecture.