Swahili Port Cities: The Architecture Of Elsewhere by Sandy Prita MeierSwahili Port Cities: The Architecture Of Elsewhere by Sandy Prita Meier

Swahili Port Cities: The Architecture Of Elsewhere

bySandy Prita Meier

Paperback | April 25, 2016

Pricing and Purchase Info


Earn 228 plum® points

In stock online

Ships free on orders over $25

Not available in stores


On the Swahili coast of East Africa, monumental stone houses, tombs, and mosques mark the border zone between the interior of the African continent and the Indian Ocean. Prita Meier explores this coastal environment and shows how an African mercantile society created a place of cosmopolitan longing. Meier understands architecture as more than a way to remake local space. Rather, the architecture of this liminal zone was an expression of the desire of coastal inhabitants to belong to places beyond their homeports. Here architecture embodies modern ideas and social identities engendered by the encounter of Africans with others in the Indian Ocean world.

Prita Meier is Assistant Professor of Art History at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Title:Swahili Port Cities: The Architecture Of ElsewhereFormat:PaperbackDimensions:248 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.68 inPublished:April 25, 2016Publisher:Indiana University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:025301915X

ISBN - 13:9780253019158


Table of Contents

Introduction: The Place In-Between
1. Difference Set in Stone: Place and Race in Mombasa
2. A "Curious" Minaret: Sacred Place and the Politics of Islam
3. Architecture Out of Place: The Politics of Style in Zanzibar
4. At Home in the World: Living with Transoceanic Things
Conclusion: Trading Places

Editorial Reviews

"Distinctive and decisive, calmly and elegantly written, this book provides a welcome case study of how the material world is made through a rich range of traveling cultural forms from across the Indian Ocean as a world system." -Isabel Hofmeyr, University of the Witwatersrand