ALHOSN Reading Club in association with the Department of Architecture hosted Dr Mohamed Fateh Zaghal author, social researcher and editor of Emarat’s cultural magazine for a presentation of his interesting book “The memory of clay” a review of architectural military monuments around Al Ain. In attendance were H.E. Professor Munther Talal Momany, Vice-Chancellor & CEO of ALHOSN University, Dr Adel Khelifi Provost for Academic affairs, Dr Mohamed Saeed Hasab El Naby, Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Dr Mohamed Kashef Dean of Research and Graduate Studies, Acting Chair of Architectural Engineering Department, Professor Hassan Mustapha Chair of the English Language Department, Mr. Ahmed Al Awadhi part-time instructor , Mr Mohamed Al Marzougui from Abu Dhabi Education Council, Dr Imad Saad Admin. Chief Editor of Abu Dhabi Network for the Environment, Mr. Khalid bin Kaka editor of Al Ilam Wal Asr, and many other guests and students.
The meeting was opened by Dr. Mohammed Said El Naby Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, who emphasized in his speech that this lecture is a bridge between two sciences and a confluence between two types of architecture: social architecture and urban architecture as sociology and Urbanism are complementary and alternate equally in significance, to the extent that any researcher in these two fields will easily find the connection between both. Referring to Ibn Khaldun in his prolegomenon Dr Hasab El Naby pointed out that Sociology or the “science of urban development “ is a science in its own right , noting the impact of the environment on people and its alteration under the influence of their lifestyle and methods of production; thus, the difference in status or life style of various generations is directly related to their own way of living.
Dr. Mohamed Kashef took over and emphasized that architectural patterns are the product of the cultural schemata and social patterns prevalent in the community, so that the weakness in architecture reflects the deterioration of the society in terms of culture and civilization, just as the prosperity of architecture expresses a cultural and social renaissance, which plays undoubtedly a key role in architectural development.
Dr. Mohammed Zaghal started his lecture by describing a number of forts and castles in the city of Al Ain, namely: Al Jahili Fort and Al Muwaiji Fort and Al Ain Palace Museum, and examined the circumstances that led to the construction of these magnificent forts as military constructions as well as residency for the rulers of the country, including the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, may God have mercy upon him. These structures, which have remained standing until now are a token of the glories of the ancestors, generation after generation through the present and the future.
The lecturer also stressed that clay architecture is coming back with greater intensity as one of the most important solutions to the problem of housing and sustainable development in the contemporary world, which is one of the most important practical aspects that connect architectural heritage to contemporary life. Dr. Zaghal pointed out that his book should be considered as a documentation of the field visits that he carried out to all the forts and castles that surround the city of Al Ain, which is a kind of archeological documentation of the military architectural structures in the city of Al Ain that is intended to save this heritage and submit it to the new generations in order to connect them to a historical period in which the most important rulers who lived in them confronted the great events that took place then; hence the importance of buildings, the area in which they were built and the names they were given.
At the end of the meeting, Prof. Dr. Munther Talal Momany, Vice-Chancellor & CEO of the University of ALHOSN University presented an ALHOSN crystal logo to Dr. Mohamed Fatih Zaghal in recognition of his efforts; the Reading Club and the Department of Architecture also gave him a Certificate of Appreciation for enriching the students' historical knowledge and raising their awareness of the importance of their heritage.
The Reading Club began its activities in 2010 in order to encourage students to read and develop their knowledge and culture, by hosting thinkers, writers, poets and particularly people interested in heritage and history. The club has also contributed to the discovery and support of talented young people.