26. Eid-ul-fitri

Photos and translation of text excerpt introducing paper I presented at the international conference in memory of Ruth First “African Intellectuals facing the challenges of the 21st century” at the Centro de Estudos Africanos, Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, Maputo yesterday, 28. November 2012. The experience of Eid, from the call of the imam in the mosque behind my house at sunrise was a deeply beautiful experience – possibly the most touching moment during my stay in Ilha.

“Because I was included in a panel with focus on religious identities and social change, I will start my presentation with some photographs from the day of the celebrating Eid-ul-fitr in Ilha de Moçambique in 2011. At this time I was in Ilha collecting fieldwork information for my Ph.D. and working in collaboration with the Gabinete de Conservação da Ilha de Moçambique. The photographs show how the urban space is transformed into a day of open air prayer, since the mosques don’t have space enough and people gather for prayer in the streets in front of the mosques. The most important celebration for the Muslim identity is at this day present in the streets of the whole city. The practice of paying together in the same place, dress in a similar way, using the same words for greetings in the streets, affirms an identity and that the whole community is part of this identity. The historical architecture recedes to the background and the celebration of the social organization becomes the most important heritage of Ilha de Moçambique on this day. People show their new clothes, greet each other on the way to and from the mosque, where prayer is heard from the rising of the sun, touching every person in the city.”

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About Silje

Architect and PhD Candidate based in Copenhagen, Denmark, but working mainly with heritage conservation and urban development in Ilha de Moçambique 2011-13. You can contact me on macutiblog at gmail dot com
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3 Responses to 26. Eid-ul-fitri

  1. Maurizio says:

    Silje, li e gostei. Até breve Professora. Maurizio

  2. Ove Hemmendorff says:

    Hej Silje.
    Vilka fina bilder – de når mig i vintriga Östersund där det idag är – 7 grader och vintersportsäsongen nyss startat. Mitt korta besök på ditt/ert kontor på Ilha i augusti 2011, och betraktandet av solnedgången från Paulas takterass är oförglömliga delar av vår lilla grupps besök på Ilha.
    Jag följer dina rapporter från världsarvet med stort intresse.
    Ove H

  3. alexandre antonio says:

    Obrigado pelas imagems Bom trabalho Alexandre Antonio Mestre em Socio-Economia do Desenvolvimento Investigador Principal Chefe do Departamento de Monumentos Direco Nacional do Patrimonio Cultural Ministerio da Cultura Moambique

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