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Following Spains democratic transition during the late 1970s, political and business elites strategically exploited Spains rich Islamic heritage in order to further projects of national redefinition, tourist promotion, and urban revitalisation. Large and ornate mosques were built in several Spanish regions, and the State granted Muslim communities an extensive array of rights and privileges that was arguably without parallel in Europe. Toward the onset of the 21st century, however, tensions surrounding Islams growing presence in Spain became increasingly common, especially in the northeastern region of Catalonia. These tensions centered largely around the presence, or proposed establishment, of mosques in Barcelona and its greater metropolitan area. This book examines how Islam went from being an aspect of Spains national heritage to be recovered and commemorated to a pressing social problem to be managed and controlled. It traces the events and developments that gave rise to this transformation, the diverse actors involved in the process, and the manner in which disputes over Muslim incorporation have become entangled with deeply-divisive debates over church-state relations and territorial autonomy. The core of the book centres on the shifting political and social dynamics surrounding the establishment of mosques, and the question of why anti-mosque mobilisations have been more prevalent and intense in Catalonia than other Spanish regions.
Churches are valuable not only for their significance within Christian religion, but also because of the historic value of the buildings themselves, and the artistic objects, furnishings and decorative features contained within them. This book explains the techniques and artistry involved in caring for the fabric and contents of churches. It considers the problems of cleaning and repair, and the damage that can be done by over-zealous non-specialists. The contributions to this book are wide-ranging and each chapter is written by a highly regarded specialist in his/her field. In addition to offering guidance on the conservation of stained glass, sculpture, textiles, metalwork, floors, furniture, decorative plaster work, paintings and so on, the book also covers the technical aspects of creating the right environment with the heating, ventilation and lighting of the building. The advice this volume contains should be essential reading for everyone concerned with the care and upkeep of churches.
Though long recognized as one of the most beautiful works from the second half of the thirteenth century, the magnificent sculptural program of the reverse faAade at Reims Cathedral has received little in the way of scholarly attention. Interpreting the iconography in the light of Latin texts associated with the building, its history and its ceremonial use, Donna Sadler assesses the significance of the reverse faAade in light of other thirteenth-century visual programs associated with the court of Louis IX. The book's chapters deal with the history of the cathedral and its architectural antecedents; the iconographic message of the visual program, the meaning of the reverse faAade and how it intersects with the overall iconography; the function of the verso and how it is enhanced by the marriage of form and content; and a consideration of contemporary works linked to the court of Saint Louis, concluding with a brief look at the new roles sculpture assumes as it migrates inside cathedrals. Ultimately this book reveals how the imagery on the reverse faAade not only conforms to a system of memory and mode of medieval narratology, but also articulates a dominant ideological position regarding the interdependence of ecclesiastical and royal powers.
Dr. Sr. Yahaya Ahmad and Mauroof Mohamed Jameel have completed a painstaking graphic survey of the now endangered ancient stone mosques of the Maldives, which were built using porite coral stone from the reefs surrounding the island nation. These include exquisitely carved architectural features and detailed lacquer work. Little is known about these mosques, and the purpose of this book is to identify the surviving mosques, their state of condition, the influences in their evolution, and to establish a typology in terms of architectural features. The authors have identified all of the surviving mosques in Maldives and have assessed their condition. They have traced the specific geo-cultural regions in the Indian Ocean that have influenced the evolution of the culture of Maldives and have compared the prominent architectural features of these regions to those of these mosques, defining similarities with structures in the South Asian, East African, Southeast Asian, and Middle Eastern regions.
Sacred buildings are among the oldest types of edifice produced in human civilisation. The construction of churches, synagogues, mosques and other building which are used for sacred, ritual or ceremonial acts is still considered the most prestigious of construction tasks. Next to functional demands, which are heavily ritualized in liturgical practice, the architects must concentrate particularly on the aesthetic expression. The space must operate as a framework for belief, with specific reference to the religion to be served. It must also be an appropriate stage for the experience of the divine service and concomitant spirituality. This volume shows exceptional examples of buildings from the various religions and denominations which often attain the status of works of art.
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