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“Environment needs clay!”, Evolutions of the habitat in the oasis of Siwa

Lecture April 2005

Vincent Battesti

“Environment needs clay!”, Evolutions of the habitat in the oasis of Siwa

Original title:
“Il faut de l’argile pour l’environnement!”, Les évolutions de l’habitat dans l’oasis de Siwa.

Lecture given at the Deuxième colloque des Journées universitaires de Calvi – Archéologie et Histoire de la Corse et de la Méditerranée: Habitat, habitation et urbanisme en Corse et en Méditerranée, April 1st-3rd, 2005. Organized by the University of Corte and U Svegliu Calvese.

- In a word: Recapitulation of the history of the habitat in the Egyptian oasis of Siwa and talk about recent phenomenon of patrimonialization on the building which occurs there: invention of the “traditional” style (which merges here with “natural”) from clay constructions ( tlaght in siwi), stylistic emergence of“néo-traditional”.

On this subject, see also the published article: Dwelling with feet of clay, Trials and tribulations of construction materials and techniques in Siwa (Egypt).

Rue ancienne menant au vieux Shâlî
Siwa, maisons en “tlaght”. 16 octobre 2002. © Vincent Battesti
La technique de construction contemporaine à Siwa
Construction en “tôb” avec ses maçons. 10 janvier 2004. © Vincent Battesti
Nouvelle gare routière de Siwa
Du “néo-traditionnnel” en construction. 19 mars 2005. © Vincent Battesti
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Vincent Battesti, "“Environment needs clay!”, Evolutions of the habitat in the oasis of Siwa" (online), Anthropoasis |, page published 2 April 2005 (consulted 25 January 2022), available on:
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