Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Structuring ethnicity: Ethnic identities & diasporic communities in the architecture of later medieval Cordoba, 10th to 16th centuries
Author: Lenton, D. A.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2744 6395
Awarding Body: University of Reading
Current Institution: University of Reading
Date of Award: 2013
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
This thesis provides the first detailed documentation of the standing architectural-archaeological remains of medieval Cordoba dating from the 10th to the 16th centuries. It establishes a comprehensive account of the range of building forms, the chronology of their development, and an analysis of their spatial arrangements, designed forms and materiality. It also develops a sophisticated archaeological approach to the study of ethnic community identities within colonial encounters by drawing upon and contributing to sociological and anthropological debates on ethnic expressions and diasporic lifestyles. A new methodology is employed to avoid solely identifying ethnic groupings from data sets of' ethnic signifiers' . A contextual-grammar approach is developed to visualise the everyday practices of different ethnic groups. The methodology focuses on the people and procedures imperative to constructing and living in their buildings. These everyday practices are identified as the "buildways" of ethnic communities. Social and cultural connections are analysed together with family and kinship mechanisms fundamental to ethnic practices. It is posited that varied groups across the social spectrum were actively using technical, syntactic and semantic architectural grammar not just in their artistic expressions but also in their habitual community practices. Within Cordoba's ethnic communities, architectural grammar was a vehicle for meaningful cultural and political dialogue. The creation and maintenance of an urban environment is evoked as a critical factor in the creation and maintenance of the city's ethnic expressions. The argument is made that the communication of each community's ethnic identity was not merely in the reproduction of traditional cultural practices but in their adaptation to local circumstances within what became hybridised building forms. As ethnic practices changed over generations, the continuous reuse of Cordoba's civil, domestic and religious architecture emphasised the continual adaptation of Cordoba's ethnic communities to their social surroundings.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available