An analytical study of traditional domestic Arab architecture
When considering the design of the built environment it is reasonable to assume that no part of this affects man's health and well-being more directly than the house in which he seeks comfort and dignity. So the design of the environment can help to shape man's life and attitudes. Nevertheless, the wider setting in which the house is located, the neighbourhood, is also of importance. Thus, when designing and planning houses, it is necessary to think not just of the individual dwelling but also of the juxtaposition of the whole neighbourhood simultaneously in terms of climate, social, functional and aesthetic aspects. In this connection, the traditional Arab house would appear to be a good example, emphasizing the positive interrelationship between the different components of the neighbourhood and the vision of the whole within which single parts have meaning. The thesis adopts this view; that is, it attempts to examine the traditional Arab house in context of the wide geographic and social setting. It commences with a discussion of the city, followed by the neighbourhood (quarter), the street and finally the house. Attention is given to the various factors which have influenced the traditional design, and a series of site experiments are described which focus on climatic and acoustical considerations. Finally, the theoretical and practical implications of the work are discussed.