Aga Khan Professor of Islamic Architecture
History, Theory & Criticism Section


Selected Publications


The Citadel of Cairo: A New Interpretation of Royal Mamluk Architecture, (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1995).

Interpreting the Self: Autobiography in the Arabic Literary Tradition , ed. D. Reynolds (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2001).   Co-author (with K. Brustad, M. Cooperson, J. J. Elias, N. N. Khoury, J. Lowry, Sh. Toorawa, D. F. Reynolds, and D. Stewart).

Thaqafat al Bina' wa Bina' al-Thaqafa: Buhuth wa Maqalat fi Naqd wa Tarikh al-ŽImara. 1985-2000 (The Culture of Building and Building Culture: Essays and Articles on Criticism and History of Architecture. 1985-2000) (Beirut: Riad Alrayyes Publisher, 2002).  

Making Cairo Medieval, eds. Nezar AlSayyad, Irene Bierman, and Nasser Rabbat (Lantham, Md.: Lexington Press, 2005) .

Scholarly Articles and Book Sections

"The Militarization of Taste in Medieval Bilad al-Sham,' in Muslim Military Architecture in Greater Syria from the Coming of Islam to the Ottoman Period, Hugh Kennedy, ed. (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 2005), 84-105.

"The Transcultural Meaning of the Dome of the Rock," in The Open Veins of Jerusalem, Munir Akash and Fouad Moughrabi, eds. (Jusoor Book, distributed by Syracuse University Press, 2005), 71-107.

žThe Medieval Link: Maqrizi's Khitat and Modern Narratives of Cairo,Ó in Making Cairo Medieval, eds. Nezar AlSayyad, Irene Bierman, and Nasser Rabbat (Lantham, Md.: Lexington Press, 2005), 29-47.

"Documenting Buildings in the Waqf System," Thresholds 28 "concerto barocco: essays in honor of Henry A. Millon" (Spring 2005): 30-32.

"Islamic Architecture as a Field of Historical Inquiry," AD Architectural Design , Special Issue Islam+Architecture 74, 6 (Nov-Dec 2004): 18-23.

"A Brief History of Green Spaces in Cairo," in Cairo: Revitalising a Historic Metropolis, S. Bianca and P. Jodidio (Geneva: The Aga Khan Trust for Culture, 2004), 43-53.

žThe Visual Milieu of the Counter-Crusade in Syria and EgyptÓ in The Crusades: Other Experiences, Alternate Perspectives. Selected Proceedings from the 32d Annual CEMERS Conference, K. I. Semaan, ed. (Binghamton, NY: Center for Medieval and Early Renaissance Studies, 2003), 71-81.

"Who Was al-Maqrizi? A Biographical Sketch," Mamluk Studies Review 7, 2 (2003): 1-19.

"Hassan Fathy and the Identity Debate," in Fault Lines: Contemporary African Art and Shifting Landscapes, Gilane Tawadros and Sarah Campbell, eds., (London: Institute of International Visual Art, 2003), 196-203.

"The Dialogic Dimension in Umayyad Art," RES 43 (Spring 2003): 78-94.

"In the Beginning Was the House: On the Image of the Two Noble Sanctuaries of Islam," Thresholds 25 (Fall 2002): 56-59.

"Concluding Remarks: The Boundaries of Architectural Education Today," in Architectural Education Today: Cross-Cultural Perspectives , A. Salama, W. O'Reilly, and K. Noschis, eds. (Lausanne: Comportements, 2002), 149-53.

"Perception of Architecture in Mamluk Sources," Mamluk Studies Review 6 (2002): 155-76.

"Maqrizi's Khitat: An Egyptian Lieu de Mémoire" in The Cairo Heritage. Papers in Honor of Layla Ali Ibrahim, Doris Behrens-Abouseif, ed. (Cairo, AUC Press, 2001), 17-30.

"Representing the Mamluks in Mamluk Historical Writing," in The Historiography of Islamic Egypt, c. 950-1800, Hugh Kennedy, ed. (Leiden, E. J. Brill, 2000), 59-75.

"Restoration Projects in Islamic Cairo Critiqued," in Medina 13 (May-June 2000): 48-51.

žThe Changing Concept of Mamluk in the Mamluk Sultanate in Egypt and Syria,Ó in Slave Elites in the Middle East and Africa: A Comparative Study, Miura Toru And John Edward Philips, eds. (London and New York: Kegan Paul International, 2000), 81-98.

"The Mosaics of the Qubba al-Zahiriyya in Damascus: A Classical Syrian Medium Acquires a Mamluk Signature." Aram 9-10 (1997-1998 [1999]): 1-13.

"The Interplay of History and Archaeology in Beirut," in Projecting Beirut: Episodes in the Construction and Reconstruction of the Modern City. Peter G. Rowe and Hashim Sarkis, eds. (Munich; London; New York: Prestel, 1998), 19-22.

"Architects and Artists in Mamluk Society: The Perspective of the Sources," Journal of Architectural Education 52, 1 (Sept. 1998): 30-37.

"The Formation of the Neo-Mamluk Style in Modern Egypt." In The Education of the Architect: Historiography, Urbanism and the Growth of Architectural Knowledge. Essays Presented to Stanford Anderson on his Sixty-Second Birthday. Martha Pollak, ed., (Cambridge, Mass., MIT Press, 1997), 363-86.

"My Life with Salah al-Din: The Memoirs of ŽImad al-Din al-Katib al-Isfahani." Edebiyat 7: 2 (Fall 1996): 61-81.

"Al-Azhar Mosque: An Architectural Chronicle of Cairo's History." Muqarnas 13 (1996): 45-67.

"The Ideological Significance of the Dar al-ŽAdl in the Medieval Islamic Orient." International Journal of Middle Eastern Studies 27, 1 (Feb 1995): 3-28.

"Writing the History of Islamic Architecture in Cairo." Design Book Review 31 (Winter 1994): 48-51.

"The 'Militarization' of Architectural Expression in the Medieval Middle East: An Outline." al-ŽUsur al-Wusta 6, 1 (April 1994): 4-6.

"Mamluk Throne Halls: Qubba or Iwan." Ars Orientalis 23 (1993): 201-18 .

"The Dome of the Rock Revisited: Some Remarks on al-Wasiti's Accounts." Muqarnas 10 (1993): 67-75 (Special Issue: Festschrift for Oleg Grabar).

"The Meaning of the Umayyad Dome of the Rock." Muqarnas 6 (1990): 12-21.

The Citadel of Cairo. (Geneva, 1989) a 32-page booklet commissioned by the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, Geneva, Switzerland

"The Iwans of the Madrasa of Sultan Hasan." ARCE Newsletter 143-44 (Fall/Winter 1988/89): 5-8.

"The Palace of the Lions in Alhambra and the Role of Water in its Conception." AARP/Environmental Design 2 (1985): 64-73.

Other Articles and Book Sections

"A Mosque and an Imperial Dream," in the Series on Muhammad Ali, Al-Ahram Weekly , (18-24 August 2005), 18.

"Foreword," to Adonis, A Time between Ashes and Roses, translated from the Arabic by Shawkat M. Toorawa (Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press, 2004).

"On being named Nasser," Al-Ahram Weekly , Special Supplement: Gold Jubilee of The 1952 Revolution, No. 595 (18-24 July 2002), 16.

  žLe classicisme, version arabe contemporaine," Qantara 42 (Hiver 2001-2002): 30-34.

"Salâh al-Dîn et l'imaginaire," Qantara 41 (Automne 2001): 30-36.

"The Shaping of the Mamlouk Image," in Hadeeth al-Dar 10 (Kuwait, Dar al-Athar al-Islamiyya, 2001): 2-5.

žAdonis, l'homme critique et poète d'un même souffle,Ó in Adonis, un poète dans le monde d'aujourd'hui, 1950-2000 (Paris: Institut du Monde Arabe, 2000),             314-16.

"Où vivaient les sultans mamelouks?" Aujourd'hui L'Égypte 9 (Automne 1989): 34-39.

Scholarly Articles in Arabic

"The Problem of Identity in Contemporary Arab Architecture," Majallat al-Funun 61 (January 2006): 25-27.

"The Dream of Safwan Dahoul," IbdaŽat Handasiyya 3 (2005): 72-79.

Arabism in the Heart of Expatriate Life," Majallat al-Adab 53, 1/2 (2005): 4-9.

"The Architectural and Memorial Significance of the Two Harams," IbdaŽat Handasiyya 2 (2004): 101-105.

"Classicism in the Contemporary Arabic Historical Discourse: Our Heritage or theirs?" Majallat al-Adab 52, 5/6 (2004): 14-18.

"The Art of the Southern Mediterranean is Still 'The Other'," Majallat al-Adab 52, 3/4 (2004): 85-88.

"Some Thoughts on Tourism in Syria: The 'Dead Cities' in BalŽas Mountains as a Model," IbdaŽat Handasiyya 1 (2004): 112-16.

"Writing on Architecture: A New Journal in Arabic," lead article in the first issue of IbdaŽat Handasiyya 1 (2003): 8-10.

"Remarks on the Relationship between the Woman and the House in Arabic Culture," Majallat al-Funun 25 (January 2003): 59-61.

"Qasr and the Connotations of Monumentality in Mamluk Architecture," Bulletin d'Études Orientales 53-54 (2001-2002): 539-558.

"The City, History, and Power: al-Maqrizi and his Pioneering Book'al-MawaŽiz wa al-IŽtibar bi Dhikr al-Khitat wa al-Athar,'" Annales Islamologiques 35 (2001): 77-100.

žIslamic Architecture: Trying to Break out of the Old Paradigm,Ó Majallat al-Funun 1 (January 2001): 39-41.

žArchitecture and Memory: An Invitation to Think,Ó Wughat Nazar 23 (December 2000): 62-64.

"Toward a Reevaluation of the Umayyad Artistic Culture," Abwab 19 (Winter 1999): 88-107.

"The Iwan: Its Spatial Meaning and Memorial Value," Bulletin d'Études Orientales 49 (1997): 249-67.

"Dar al-ŽAdl, the History of a Medieval Islamic Institution," Al-Ijtihad 6, 22 (Winter 1994): 57-82.

"The Development of the Souk in Damascus, 700-1900," Les Annales Archeologiques Arabes Syriennes 37 (1988-89 [1991]): 75-104.

The Citadel of Cairo. (Geneva, 1989) a 32-page booklet commissioned by the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, Geneva, Switzerland.

"The Concept of the Residence Quarter in 19th c. Damascus," Les Annales Archeologiques Arabes Syriennes 35 (1985): 537-64.

"The Social Order in the Layout of the Islamic City," al-Mouhandis al-Arabi, Journal of the Syrian Order of Engineers 78 (Sept.-Oct 1984): 9-11.

Other Publications in Arabic

"Ummi wa Abi wa Ana," short story, Majallat al-Adab 53, 8/9/10 (2005): 63-67.

"In Defense of Criticism: A Call to Arab Critics," Majallat al-Adab 53, 6/7 (2005): 4-7.

"Abdo," short story, Majallat al-Adab 53, 3/4/5(2005): 78-82.

"Raqsat al-Tannura (The Dance of Tannura)," Short story, Majallat al-Adab 52, 7/8 (2004): 44-48.

"Remarks on the Novel 'My Name is Red' by Orhan Pamuk," (in Arabic), Wughat Nazar 46 (Nov 2002): 58-60.

"The Representational Elements of the Mamluk Image," Hadeeth al-Dar 10 (2001): 2-7.

žOn Freedom and Belonging in the Arab World,Ó Wughat Nazar 29 (June 2001): 64-69.

"Salah al-Din al-Ayyubi: The Hero between History and Myth and the Postmodern Framework. A Criticial Review of The Book of Saladin by Tariq Ali," Al-Bahrain al-Thaqafiyya 26 (Oct. 2000): 29-34.

žRemarks on the Document , Memory and Reconciliation: The Church and the Faults of the Past, Did the Pope Apologize to the Muslims?Ó Wughat Nazar 18 (July 2000): 46-49.

"Signs of the Built in ŽAsfar al-Bunyan': Architecture in the Writings of Jamal al-Ghitani," Al-Hilal 107, 1(January 1999): 152-59.

" Oral Messages of ŽAbd al-Hamid ŽAbd al-Latif (film review)," Majallat al-Fann al-SabiŽ 8 (July 1998): 48-49.

Contributor to the Arabic international newspapers al-Hayat (June 1998-April 1999), al-Mustaqbal (August 1999-February 2000), and al-Quds al-ŽArabi (2001-2004), and the cultural journals Akhbar al-Adab (March 1999-present), and An-Naqid (1993-1994) on issues in cultural policies, architectural history, art and architectural criticism, and reviews of books, exhibitions, and films.

Encyclopedia Entries

Articles in the Encyclopedia of Islam, 2d ed. (1960-2005): "Shadirwan," 9: 175-76; "tiraz," "Riwak," 8: 544-45; "Ribat," 8: 506. "Rank," 8: 431-33.

Articles, "Mosque," "Abbasids," "MuŽawiya," "ŽAbd al-Malik," "al-Tabari," and "al-Baladhuri," in Late Antiquity A Guide to the Late Antique World, G. W. Bowersock, P. Brown, and O. Grabar eds., (Cambridge, Mass.: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1999).

Article "the City," in Encyclopedia of the Qur'an. E.J. Brill Publishers, Leiden, the Netherlands (2001-).

Article "Damascus," in Encyclopedia Britannica (2004).

Books in Preparation

An edited book of essays on the courtyard house, sponsored by the Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture, entitled The Courtyard House: Between Cultural Expression and Universal Application to be published by Ashgate in 2006.

A book of collected essays, originally delivered at the Institut du monde arabe (IMA) in Paris in January and February 2003, to be published by IMA.   It is entitled, L'art Islamique à la recherche d'une méthode historique.

A book on the fifteenth-century historian al-Maqrizi whose Khitat treatise forms the summation of writing on the city in the medieval Islamic tradition.   The book will be published by Oneworld Publishers, London in 2005 as part of their new series "Makers of the Islamic World."

A book on the representation of the Mamluk elite, their culture, and their artistic and architectural endowments in Mamluk sources.   It is tentatively entitled, Shaping the Mamluk Image: The Scope of the Sources.

Book Reviews

Yasser Tabbaa, The Transformation of Islamic Art during the Sunni Revival , in Mamluk Studies Review 7, 2 (2003): 250-53.

Diala Khasawneh, Memoirs Engraved in Stone: Palestinian Urban Mansions, in Journal of Palestine Studies 125, 32, 1 (Fall 2002): 107-109.

Husni Muhammad Nuwaysir, al-ŽImara al-Islamiyya fi-Misr: ŽAsr al-Ayyubiyyin wa-l Mamalik (Islamic Architecture in Egypt: the Ayyubid and Mamluk Periods), in Mamluk Studies Review 5 (2001): 205-208.

Sheila S. Blair and Jonathan M. Bloom, The Art and Architecture of Islam 1250-1800, in Design Book Review 37/38 (Summer 1996): 94-96.

Nelly Hanna, Habiter au Caire, la maison moyenne et ses habitants aux 17e et 18e siècles, in International Journal of Middle Eastern Studies , 26, 2 (May 1994): 296-99.

Hadi al-ŽAlawi, Min Tarikh al-TaŽzib fi al-Islam [On the History of Torture in Islam], and al Muntakhab mina al-Luzumiyyat: Naqd al-Dawla wa al-Din wa al-Nas [The Critique of State, Religion and People], in al-ŽUsur al-Wusta 5, 2 (Oct. 1993): 41-42.

Juan Eduardo Campo, The Other Sides of Paradise: Explorations into the Religious Meanings of Domestic Space in Islam, in Design Book Review, 29/30 (Summer/Fall 1993): 79-81.

ŽAziz al-ŽAzma, al-ŽArab wa'l-Barabira: al-Muslimun wa'l-Hadarat al-Ukhra, [Arabs and Barbarians: Muslims and Other Cultures] and M. ŽAbbas al-Musawi, al-ŽAwamil al-Ta'rikiyya li-Nash'at wa Tatawwur al-Mudun al-ŽArabiyya al-Islamiyya, [The Historical Factors contributing to the Founding and Development of Arabo-Islamic Cities]Ó in al-ŽUsur al-Wusta, 4, 2 (Oct. 1992): 33-34.

L.A. Ibrahim & M.M. Amin, Architectural Terms in Mamluk Documents, in Middle East Studies Association Bulletin, 26, 1 (July 1992): 112-13.