Theory of Urbanism as derived from the Khaldunic Paradigms
Language: Arabic
Publishing Date: 1996
Available in a digital copy
Tarek Waly

This publication presents a specialized study where the author has embarked on this complex subject from a basic rule of moderation or equilibrium, weighed up against time and space. Setting off from where the others have reached, the author’s vision was focused on the ties with Ibn Khaldun’s findings, and hypothesis on urbanism which has addressed a comprehensive history of urbanism of societies. This is meant to assist any community to grasp the wisdom of those laws, within the context of the present time or situation. The author believes in the existence of a struggle and a dispute in the Arab and Islamic communities between the previous verses the latter, with an interplay among a variety of powers:

The Power I: The traditional – or the backward advocates and reactionaries. It refers to those who have expressed their faith in the absolute legitimacy of the past and considered it to be a tangible indicator for the present and the future epochs. Thus, they detach themselves from the current problems of the present, and drop time as a force of impact, out of their perspective, sufficing with experiences of their ancestors, and closing the door of research.

The Power II: The futuristic or the progressive - who drop the past and let it slide away taking with it the originality, inheritance, and traditions of communities. This approach leads to the obliteration of indigenous features and urges the need to start from scratch.

Therefore, neither of the two powers deals with community problems, its hopes and aspirations, history and civilization, and their very existence. This book examines the history, in order to understand and extract its constant values, to enable the formulation of sources of knowledge. It is meant to act in line with common beliefs, belonging, identity, history, and culture. Urbanism in its broader sense clearly articulates the recurrence of this scheme. Ibn Khaldun had called for a look at urbanism in its entirety to anticipate the eternal law, or laws, that distinguish right from wrong. He had tried to devise such laws or self-symptoms, and the formulation of a theory on the issues of urbanization and the state, their evolution, and their successive cycles in the historical past, the current present, and the expected future.

The book states and analyses six introductions for urbanization and the state in Ibn Khaldun’s thoughts. Those are the concerns of heritage, civilization, Khaldouniya, modernity, the issue of the theory, and that of the city. At that point, the author has reached the result of commending the laws of urbanism as had been stated by Ibn Khaldun, their contemporary validity, their comprehensiveness, and the physical continuity in their sustainability within the context of our present time. The book concludes by stating the Khaldunic paradigm along its two axes: State and City and its contemporary appropriateness. It is a paradigm from the past to the future as it is the:

Theory of Urbanism as Derived from the Khaldunic Paradigms


Tarek Waly

August 10, 1995