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Farid Al-Qeeq

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Shatha Abu Khafajah

Hashemite University - Jordan

Yasser Al Rajjal

German-Jordanian University - Jordan

Call for papers for the next issue of Lonaard Magazine

The Paradigm of ‘Islamic’ Architecture: The ‘cultural broad context’ versus ‘religious text/context’

Organized by
Lonaard Group -London

The term ‘Islamic’ architecture has been used extensively by scholars and academics in the Arab Architectural discourse. It has been used since the seventies to refer to a certain ‘type’ of architecture that prevailed across Arab and Muslim countries. This superficial understanding, associated mainly with ‘forms’ and certain ‘features’, has been regarded as far from the true nature of the so called ‘Islamic architecture’ because, some argue, this architecture should be understood with reference to the mechanisms of evolutions or principles that generated its unique outcome. Within current academic domains, there exist two main streams: one engaged in long thoughtful arguments to distract meanings and concepts embedded in ‘Islamic’ architecture with reference to the general meaning of Islam as a dominant culture, the other emerged as a close association with Shareeia and religion in an attempt to undermine the socio-cultural factors and force these into a narrow vision and misinterpretations derived from ‘religious texts’.

Another cause for controversy lies in the fact that much research, by individuals and institutions alike, has been focused on ‘Islamic monumental buildings’ that do not reflect the real causes for the evolution of ‘Islamic’ architecture, while to a great deal offsetting the vernacular and domestic domains.

While not limiting the subject to this introduction, and because it has become important to understand its very basics within the context of Arab architecture, it is imperative to address the issue from various view points. For this, we invite scholars to contribute to this subject within the following themes.

Themes & Research Areas
In order to study, evaluate and explore these issues rigorously, we invite scholars, experts, and professionals to tackle the subject and submit papers, within these main themes:

Islamic architecture – Theory and Philosophy
Papers within this level may:
- re-visit the subject on the terminology level and put forward an argument that discuss extensively previous ideas, then refute or accept them within a clear theoretical framework.
- review and discuss various opinions, arguments and theories with clear methodology.
- explore potential flaws in current arguments with an attempt to put forward a theoretical framework for a new methodology to address and understand the subject.
- conduct comparative analytical studies to better understand the terminology and its implications.
- review articles, papers or books within the context of exploring terminology used in Arab Muslim architecture.
- address the controversial relation between Sharei’a or the so called ‘Fiqh Omran’ and architecture in Islam.
- discuss the following question: ‘is Islamic architecture a reflection of culture or religion’ or both and why?
- discuss the following question within the context of Islamic architecture: which term is genuine: ‘Fiqh al Omran, or ‘Ilm Al Omran’?
- provide any relevant argument that serve to tackle the subject on the theory level.

‘Islamic’ Architecture – Theory and Practice
Papers may adhere to one of the following main ideas:
- study the relation between the misunderstanding of the terminology and cases or practices.
- examine the role of some institutions over the past years in marketing a ‘conceptual stereotype’ that needs to be discussed again.
- explain the importance of a clear relation between understanding theoretical ideas in difference to good practice.
- explore any other relevant ideas that fits in this theme to better understand the relation between theory and practice as far as ‘Islamic architecture’ is concerned.

Islamic Architecture - Urban Design and Regional Planning
Papers within this theme may:
- review and discuss case studies from the Arab Muslim world on the good or bad understanding of Arab architecture within the Islamic context.
- put forward an application of how ‘Islamic architecture’ could and should be utilized to cope with contemporary requirements and needs.
- analyze regional case studies with cross examination to draw conclusions to link past precedents with current needs.
- detect the principles that generated the outcome of ‘Islamic architecture’ in urban or regional settlements past or present.
- explore theoretical and/or practical basis of regional architecture, the vernacular, local architecture, and heritage within Arab Islamic architecture.
- conduct a study on the morphology of ‘Islamic architecture’.
- highlight the socio-cultural and/or other factors that have influenced ‘Islamic architecture’ versus the ‘religious’ factor.

Education and Research
Authors could:
- conduct a critical study to examine available research and systems of education in the Arab World, and explore the extent to which some of those have sustained misunderstanding of ‘Islamic architecture’ in theory and/or practice.
- examine the extent to which current pedagogical systems in the Arab world have contributed to the understanding of ‘Islamic architecture’ - negatively or positively.
- study and discuss the role of media, symposia, and research in addressing this subject.
- review available research that highlights the extent to which pedagogy and research are successful in addressing the subject the right way.

Important Dates
Deadline for abstracts: April 30, 2011
Notification of acceptance May 02, 2011
Full paper submission: May 20, 2011

Submission and relevant guidelines

Authors, writers and scholars are advised to read the following guidelines carefully before sending their contributions as failing to adhere to the these strict rules may result in their work declined from publication. From previous experience in editing immature submitted text, this proved to be time consuming and endlessly laborious. While we open the door wide for all scholars to contribute without prejudice, we reserve the right to decline any text that appears to be replete with elementary mistakes before even wasting the time of our review committee, as their job will not be to edit language or typing mistakes which is the sole responsibility of the author. Therefore, we ask everyone to check their work carefully and kindly abide by the following rules:

The length of text, format and submission
- The length of abstracts should not exceed 400 words, articles no longer than 2000 words and full paper submission should not in any way exceed 5000 words excluding footnotes or references.
- Papers and articles could be written in English or Arabic, either way the author should provide synopsis of about 200 words in the other language that of the article or paper.
- Abstracts, papers and articles should contain author(s) name(s), academic rank or title, institution or place of work.
- Abstracts and full paper submissions should be sent in MS Word format by e-mail to

Paper and article structure and writing code
- The use of references should adhere to proper academic practice, the text should be supported with clear photographs where necessary and with clearly stated references. Illustrations, maps & tables, should be inserted within the text and dutifully explained.
- For Arabic text please adhere to these guidelines: Arabic writing code
- For English text please adhere to the following code English text format
- For use of references please check this file Bibliography
- We only accept original authentic work of the writer/co-writers. Any previously published material in part or whole will be rejected and any writer prove to send such work or practice plagiarism of any sort will be banned in the future from any publication with Lonaard Magazine.

Guidelines for sending and including photos in papers
- Authors are required to include low-quality photos within papers for evaluation, if the paper is accepted then the author will be required to re-submit the photos SEPARATELY AGAIN with the following quality and format:
- Depending on the size of the photo, the minimum should be 300 dpi, if the photo is in large size then the resolution should be close to 600 dpi. This is to ensure a high quality for the photo in the printed version of the Magazine.
- The photo should be saved in ‘CMYK TIFF’, processed by Photoshop, compressed by LZW so that the photo will not lose its resolution when compressed and sent as attachment by email.
- Needless to mention that all photos should be the work of the author for copyrights issue, otherwise the source of the photo must be clearly stated under each photo.

For any further inquiries please contact us at

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