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Scholarship of Design
The Failed Utopia of a Modern African Vernacular
Miguel Guitart
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My research on Hassan Fathy’s New Gourna project in Egypt will try to set the appropriate history and the relevant principles on which this key project is based. The main body of the paper consists of a critical analysis of some of Fathy’s theories and practices, as we understand they are essential to reevaluate the architect’s work. Concentrating on this specific part could encourage some interesting new discussions of a legacy that dealt with the transitional relationship between modern and vernacular in Egypt. Through the text, I will try to synthesize Fathy’s achievements and rediscover what his ideas have meant to the architectural discourse in a postmodern context. The exploration of a critical case study in Fathy’s architectural work leads us to question his practice of architecture under economical and social circumstances within a nation that was dealing with its own identity. Read the full article at Taylor & Francis.