Lawrence maintains about all architectural environments and housing that, they are both in a relationship with culture and they are a total configuration of social, demographical, psychological, human behavioral and environmental structure. Moreover, in analyzing this complex structure, he emphasizes to examine it within two perspectives: design-meaning and use. Consequently, the basic components, which affect housing design, are classified in three main topics: cultural, social, and psychological. In the light of Lawrence's ideas, under the topic of the role of culture and tradition in the development of housing, this paper aims to define the basic Turkish traditional housing principles with slogans and important examples. In this content, cultural, social and psychological components in traditional Turkish houses are held under the heading of the development of traditional Turkish house. The organization rules, the effects of the basic psycho-social components...etc., and the presence of these principles are criticized with Turkish housing examples before and after 1980. The chosen period in this study is not coincidental. The aim of choosing the periods before and after 1980 has a special meaning in Turkey's economic, politic and social life. Choosing these two basic periods, will not only point out the changes-like a metamorphism-in cultural life, but in architectural needs in Turkish houses. Therefore, in the aim of analyzing cultural changes and their effects on housing design, the architectural meanings in the elements of Turkish houses are put forward in details, in order to make some estimation for the future of changing Turkish architectural life. © 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.