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Islam Builds in India- Cultural Study of Islamic Architecture

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Item Code: UAS489
Publisher: Agam Kala Prakashan, Delhi
Author: K.V. Soundara Rajan
Language: English
Edition: 1983
Pages: 234 (Throughout B/W Illustrations)
Other Details 11.00 X 9.00 inch
Weight 1.28 kg
Book Description

This book is different from the usual des criptive accounts of the Islamic monuments in India and their style. It seeks to understand the background to the architectural creations of Islam, the problems of integrating indigenous techniques with the new environment and purpose. It tries to examine the formal structural motivations in the pre Mughal and Mughal stages and the subtle distinctions between the two. It reviews certain open and knotty aspects of the structural beginnings of this architecture and material evidence on hand. Above all it tries to understand the regional styles (wrongly called provincial) in their proper perspective, both of common factors and specialities as between Upper Indian and Deccani modes. It is a sympathetic study and an archaeologist's approach to the historical developments related to the structural modes and lay out patterns. It is to be used for a better and deeper appreciation of the special and complementary place. Islamic architecture has in the unified heritage of Indian architecture. It is profusely illustrated and with many help ful charts and comparative data. It fulfills a void in our overall understanding of the synthesis underlying the spectacular creative spectrum unfolded by Islam after its total and unqualified domicility in India as a partner in its art and cultural endeavours.

About The Author

K.V. SOUNDARA RAJAN (b. 1925) is a respected and versatile scholar of the country in archaeology and art history. Educated at the Madras and Allahabad Universities, he entered the Archaeological Survey of India first as scholar in 1947, selected by Sir Mortimer Wheeler (then its Director General) and from 1954 was selected as an Officer in the Survey. He now occupies the Additional Director General-ship of the Survey. Equally at home in Pre-and Protohistoric investigations where he had made significant contributions, and in Art history of India where he has made a mark, he is equipped well for analytical studies of both archaeological and art legacy of India, by his sound base in Sanskrit and with a wide field training in diverse branches of archaeology, including magalithic studies, and with his original approach to the problems of interpretation of Indian culture. He had been studying Islamic architecture of India for nearly three decades now. He has more than four hundred research papers and ten books to his credit. He is widely travelled in India and in various parts of U.K., U.S.A., Europe and S.E. Asia, and was Visiting Professor in the Universities of Chicago and Los Angeles (California). He was a member of the Official Cultural delegation to Vietnam and Thailand in 1978 and is a member of several learned Societies, besides being the President of the Indian Society for Prehistoric and Quaternary Studies (1982) and Vice-President of the Indian Archaeological Society. His other interests are classical music and the stage.


Islamic architecture in the Indian subcontinent forms a vast milieu by itself, for the authenticity of whose delineations, we have not to look beyond the borders of India, notwithstanding its being part of a much larger intercontinental movement which established itself first in the Middle East-or what is more appropriately termed West Asia. This movement, between the 8th and 12th centuries A.D. had consolidated its formalizations in this zone, with such firm terms of reference that its conspectus in architecture and aesthetics had become one of the major global events in art history. When this eventually spread over India, through the political invasions and conquest and rule by Islamic dynasties, between the close of the 12th century A. D. and virtually upto the 18th century A. D., it introduced, developed and perfected a series of inter-related regional and central formalization-spectra with a zeal and expertise that absorbed, to a phenomenal degree, indigenous craft and art specialization and the heritage of India. This naturally resulted in a totally fresh art panorama which was genuinely Indian.

**Contents and Sample Pages**

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