ARTH 220(F) The Mosque*

The mosque (masjid) is the site of communal prayer rituals and other activities of Islam. By definition, it must simply be a clean space oriented towards Mecca. In actuality, mosques have taken diverse architectural forms ranging from simple hypostyle halls of mud-brick to elaborate complexes of reinforced concrete and plate glass. This course will address the stylistic and regional differences from the seventh to twentieth century, including the columned halls of the central Arab lands, the centralized domed structures such as monumental calligraphy, glazed tilework and stucco. The course will culminate in a consideration of modern mosque architecture in which tradition and modernism combine to generate new forms of sacred space. Format: lecture/discussion. Requirements: paper, midterm, and final exams. Enrollment limit: 40.