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Title: Sustainability of regional identity in Lebanese architecture
Author: Al-Shanti Yassine, Nariz
ISNI:       0000 0004 5369 6451
Awarding Body: Ulster University
Current Institution: Ulster University
Date of Award: 2014
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Cultural milieu has had a greater influence on architectural identity, in particular on the visual image of a building, than climate, location, and construction techniques. The preservation of the external appearance of a building enriches and sustains the cultural identity of a place. It has become an valuable manifestation and symbol of the importance of sustaining culture. Moreover, the role of sustaining cultural heritage in a territory is a tool that may enable the reconciliation of conflicting cultures in order to increase social cohesion, local identity and equity. In a multi-cultural society within the Lebanese context, conflicts of social identity between different groups have occurred. Separation between these groups occurs due to their belonging to different religious sects. Different dimensions of these conflicts, in the increasing levels of immigration, frequent wars, the colonization of Lebanon and imbalanced globalization, all led to a loss of a unified sense of national identity, and hence a loss of regional national architectural identity. Culture has two key characteristics; One of evolvement, in that it passes from one generation to the next, the other of change, in that different cultures in one place can be separate from each other, giving identity to a place over different periods of time. Thus, culture of a place is inseparable from the natural environment. On the other hand, social attitude is crucial when defining and distinguishing social identity. This thesis introduces the polluted and biased canon of "Lebanese architecture" what has been the result of the conflicting multi -cultural nation. By introducing the formation of the Lebanese natural environment and socio-cultural situations that have had a critical impact throughout history. This thesis determines the critical periods that affect Lebanese architectural identity formation and variation. It investigates the relationship between architectural identity and the socio-cultural identity through a chronological analysis of the development of architectural elements in Lebanon in order to discuss the different emerging styles, all of which claim the Lebanese architectural identity. Following this, the research considers the impact of the struggles for political powers that played a crucial role in changing the social values, aims, and interests that affected the identification of a national architectural identity. It will present the authorities and institutions that were created over time and their role in preserving architectural identity. The thesis creates a new approach for defining a new canon of Lebanese architecture from the marginal cultures, as opposed to professionals and scholars, in order not to politicize the issue of architectural identity. It also examines the attitude of different Lebanese religious groups by determining the most desired Lebanese architectural elements to be sustained, and by exploring the desired degree of imitation within Lebanese architecture which the different groups would accept in order to achieve an agreeable Lebanese style to be sustained for future generations, and that will be one of the cultural issues that assure social cohesion and may resolve conflicts.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available