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The Other Maps of Cairo

In Academic, Thursday, March 03, 2016

The ‘Other’ Maps of Cairo was a course about exploring the multiple realities of a city through maps and mapping. The course started with a theoretical base of four weeks in which we extended the concept of maps beyond the cartographic sense to include inscriptions, literature, movies and songs. Relating how these forms of spatial representation were constantly controlled by a certain power in charge of drawing a certain image of the space to the role of technology and the impact of the medium over the message. Through a seminar based pedagogy students were critically investigating the meaning of a map, how it is constructed and propagated as an image of the city.

By the fifth week of the course students started investigating what other maps of the city can be. They started questioning what are the other sides and spaces of Cairo that are not shown on the official map of the city. Students were encouraged to choose the proper medium of their proposals from games, installations to mobile mapping applications and start working on it from sixth week. They started looking at the unseen but heavily felt aspects of the city of Cairo like the street bumps, sounds of the different neighborhoods, the informal bridal markets, the temporary Moulids, the routes chosen by runners and many other aspects. Some students worked on designing urban games that either worked at the intersection between the digital media and the lived city or board games that tackle historical dogmas and visual connotations of Cairo.

Involved Academics:

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Tamer El Khorazaty


Nermin El Sherif

Teaching Assistance:

Dina Hammamo

Marco Michel