Reconciliations and continued polarities in the works and theories of Halim and Bakri
Author(s)Nabil, Yasser M. (Yasser Mostafa)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Architecture.
William Lyman Porter.
MetadataShow full item record
The Egyptian society today is facing many socio-economical, political and cultural challenges that are directly influencing the living standards and circumstances of its members despite their position in the society's hierarchy. The most important of these challenges is the struggle between the Inherited and the Imported that takes the modernization processes that were repeatedly implemented by the different rulers and elite class of the society as its active field. These modernization processes almost always mean Westernization . They have resulted in the separation of the society into two distinct segments; a Westernized rich and powerful high-middle class and up, and a more or less traditional poor and powerless low-middle class and down. As a direct result of these challenges the society is experiencing problems of inequality, class conflict, search for identity, among many others. These problems have a great impact on the living standards of the majority of the society. Additionally, they greatly influence the power relations both between the different segments of the society and between the society as a whole and the Western societies. This thesis discusses some of the attitudes and positions towards this issue of the Inherited versus the Imported and the problems that resulted from it. It attempts to achieve this from within the architectural profession by taking the attitudes, theories and works of two contemporary Egyptian architects -- Abdel Halim Ibrahim Abdel Halim and Carnal Bakri -- as examples of the moderate position that tries to rid itself from any emotional or unrealistic biases towards either end. Through the study of the origins and the nature of these two architects' attitudes, theories and works I have showed how they have raised the level of sophistication and complexity of the discussion of these challenges. In other words, certain levels of reconciliations have been achieved. Nevertheless, despite these reconciliations that narrow the gap between a number of polarities within the Egyptian society and despite the agreement on the nature of the main issues at stack, issues of the role of the Egyptian architect in the development process, the nature of the architectural profession -- being an art form or a social reform tool, how to deal with the latest available technologies that appear in the West, the universality of the current dominant civilization versus the regional identity of each society, and why and how do we relate to history, among many others, are still being debated. Thus, clear biases are evident in the two architects' underlying attitudes towards the two poles of this dilemma.
Thesis (M.S.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Architecture, 1994.Includes bibliographical references (p. 141-150).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Architecture.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology