Encounter with the eruv : a project towards the city of open enclosures
Author(s)Levy, Miriam, 1974-
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Architecture.
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The thesis examines the physical and symbolic spaces of the eruv through a textual and visual engagement. An eruv is a synthetic single private domain to facilitate carrying in a city, which is otherwise only allowed within a private domain on Shabbat in orthodox Judaism. An eruv is created by constructing a continuous boundary and the symbolic pooling of resources of the community. Both the eruv's origin in Jewish law as well as contemporary analysis provide the framework for my own interpretation. The thesis bridges across several disciplines - from architecture, art, Judaism, anthropology, feminism, and cultural studies - to find an approach which opens this 2000 year old tradition to a contemporary encounter. The eruv's physical and intangible spaces are discussed as paradoxical spaces to create a site of encounter. In relationship to the existing and proposed readings, the contemporary significance of eruvin (pI. of eruv), not only for a Jewish community, but for any individual or community, local or foreign, is explored. The thesis discusses notions of a nomadic navigation of space, a symbiotic construction of belonging, an ethics of foreignness, and a site for encounters. More traditional interpretations that are often based on dyadic systems are contrasted with explorations of the topic in relationship to paradoxical spaces, so that a space for diverse identities and their coalition emerges. My encounter and photographs of the Boston eruv relate the mental spaces to the physical architecture and reveal its minimal physicality with in its urban context. Through photographs and text the eruv is recognized as architecture, and opens it to broader discussion of space and meaning. My research increases the presence of the eruv and positions the existing and proposed spaces for adaptation and transformation by others who might need an eruv that has yet to be designed.
Thesis (S.M.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Architecture, 2000.Includes bibliographical references (leaves 147-155).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Architecture.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology