Misr International University (EGYPT)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2013 Proceedings
Publication year: 2013
Pages: 2772-2781
ISBN: 978-84-616-3847-5
ISSN: 2340-1095
Conference name: 6th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 18-20 November, 2013
Location: Seville, Spain
The problem of Architectural Identity and its concomitant problem of Architectural education credibility have been and still are debated in most conferences and symposia. However, few are the studies that have tackled the History/Theory and Criticism courses, regarded as milestones in solving the problem. Such courses are believed to contribute to endorsing the mindsets of the students as well as professionals towards an identity that expresses the contemporary Egyptian culture and its diversity. A quick look at both available Egyptian architectural literature and textbooks affirms a major deficiency in addressing the theoretical development, and the methodic analytical elaboration of the architectural students regarding the understanding of the IDENTITY issue, from both the users’ and the designers’ points of views. Misconceptions are the natural consequences, witnessed in an overall deterioration of the formalistic trends that cover the face of Egypt. All of which are accused to set negative examples and repertoires of architectural identity for both users and students to learn from, and follow, and so on. A vicious cycle will continue unless something is profoundly done.

The paper at hand tackles this topic. It sheds light on the urge to develop the architectural HTC regarding the issue of Egyptian cultural and architectural identity. The aim is to advocate a more analytical and methodic approach towards understanding the concept and its physical implications. To achieve its aim, the paper will review the current HTC courses taught in the major architectural schools in Egypt. Then, will move to review and will attempt to categorize the dominant trends of contemporary Egyptian architecture. Then will try to link the trends to their theoretical derivations. Discussion of the findings will help develop a theoretical framework towards developing the HTC courses in Egypt and thus contributing to the exploration and endorsement of the diverse authentic Egyptian architectural identity(ies).
Cultural Identity, Architectural Identity, Egyptian Identity.