3 Pages


BySomaiyeh Falahat

A reading of the city based on the conceptualization of Hezar-tu introduces urban space as a composition of tus. Each spatial metaphor or concept can reveal specific structures of comprehension and shape representations. In the literature that actually acknowledges the phenomenological characteristics of Islamic cities – although mostly without incorporating such perceptions into theory-making – urban space is observed as enfolded, mysterious, inscrutable, entr'ouvert, simultaneously open and closed, ambiguous, maze-like and labyrinthine. Among the conceptualizations used to describe these features of the city, that of 'labyrinth' is the closest and most complex expression of the sensual experiences of the urban space. Despite its controversial applications in this context, the choice of this metaphor denotes a perception that goes beyond mere cognition. A fresh perspective is needed that lays stress on the relations between spaces and in-between spaces: an approach that is based on continuity rather than segregation, where the continuity is constructed by endlessly establishing and transforming.