Impact of Modernization on the Physical-Spatial Structures of Tehran in the First Pahlavi period and those of Kabul in Amani Period

Document Type : Research Article


1 Associate Professor, Department of architecture, Collage of Fine Arts, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran.

2 PhD candidate, Department of architecture, Collage of Fine Arts, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran.


Problem statement: Apart from mental effects, the ideas of modernization in the form of a pervasive current in the culture and literature of the world have been objectively manifested in the architectural forms and the cities. Such changes have transformed the forms of cities and given a rise to new words such as modernist cities . While significant changes were taking place in Tehran with the echo of modernization during the first Pahlavi era, Kabul was experiencing changes in political and social aspects and an urban body with a similar theme to Tehran was being shaped.
Research objective: This study attempts to explain the role of the modernization project and compare its effect on the changes in the physical-spatial structure of Kabul city in the period of Amani with that of Tehran city in the first Pahlavi period. For this purpose, the following question was raised: How was the urban development of Tehrandifferent from or similar to the one in Kabul in the mentioned periods in terms of structures, nature, and aspects?
Research method: This is a historical-comparativequalitativestudyemploying and documentary data analysis. The historical-interpretive research method was used for collecting the historical theoretical foundation of the study and the descriptive-analytical research method was drawn upon to analyze and compare physical-spatial structure changes in Tehran and Kabul.
Conclusion: A comparison of the modernization measures by Reza Shah and Amanullah Khan shows that there are many similarities in the intensity and diversity of these measures. It can be said that the formation of the cities in these two countries has not been endogenous, reproductive, evocative, and dynamic. Moreover, it has not arisen from the context of society rather it has been the result of a policy of modernization and westernization based on the wishes and orders of the governments.


Abrahamian, E. (2000). Iran Between Two Revolutions (A. Gulmohammadi & M. I. Fattahi, Trans.). Tehran: Ney Publication.
Aghaie, M. (2012). Tehran: Aks-ha-yiaz Tehran-e-GhadimvaNegahiTatbighi be Tehran-e-GhadimvaEmroz [Photos of old Tehran and a comparative outlook on old and nowadays Tehran]. V. 1. Tehran: Sazman Zibasazi Shahr-e-Tehran publication.
Arez, Gh. J. (1998). Kabul: yesterday, today and it's unclear future. Pishawar: Zahed Omar Ltd.
Bharier, J. (1984). Eqtesad-e-Iran (1900-1970) [Iran economy (1900-1970)]. Tehran: Moasesse Hesabresi.
Digard, J. P., Hourcade, B.& Richard, Y. (2003).  L'Iran au XXe siècle. (A. R.Hosang Mahdavi, Trans.). V. 2th. Tehran: Alborz Publication.
Ehlers, E. (2001). Iran: Shahr- Rosta- Ashaier [Iran: City- Village- Tribe]. Tehran: Munshi.
Fouchet, Maurice. (1933). Notes sur l'Afghanistan. Cambridge University Press.
Gharghasht, M. N. (1966). Rahnama-ye Kabul [Kabul guide].Kabul: Bina.
Ghobadian, V. & Rezaei, M. (2014). The First Modern Square In Tehran City (Historical And Spatial Evolution Of Old Tehran Squares Until Modern Age). Human geography research, 45(4), 177-196.
Ghobar, M .Gh. (1999). Afghanistan in the Course of History. V. 1 & 2. Tehran: EnqelabvaJumhori.
Gregorian, V. (1969). The emergence of modern Afghanistan (A. Alemi Kermani, Trans.). Tehran: Erfan Publication.
Habibi. M. (2011). Az Shar ta Shahr [From city to city]. Tehran: Tehran university Press.
Habibi. M. & Ahari, Z. (2006). Iranian Architecture And Urban Development: 19311-11941 Ad The First Modernity And The Second Modernism The Case Of Tehran. Soffeh, 15(42), 40-49.
Haghir, S. (2008). Stylistics Of Art-Nouveau In The Contemporary Architecture Of Iran. Honar-Ha-Ye-Ziba,  (35), 63-73.
Hosseyni S. S. & Moridi M. R. (2018). A Comparative Study On Iranian And Turkish Art In The Modern Social Transformation Context.  Visual and applied arts, 11(21), 101-120.
Jamali, F. & Maleki, S. (2006). Jostari bar Makateb-e Modernism va Postmodernism darMemarivaShahrsazi [A Study of the Schools of Modernism and Postmodernism in Architecture and Urbanism]. Housing and rural enviroment, (109), 25-38.
Katouzian, H. (2006). Eqtesad-e Siasi Iran [Political Economy of Iran]. Tehran: Markaz. 
Khalil, M. E. (1957). Qasida-ye KhosrawmotakhallesbaNayebdarta'rif-e Kabol [Eulogy of Kabul: the Qasida of Khosraw, whose pen name was Nayeb].Aryana, 15(2), 22–32.
Khalilikho, M. R. (1994). Tose´ehvaNosazi-ye Iran darDowre-ye Reza-Shah [Development and rehabilitation of Iran in Reza Shah period]. Tehran: JahadDaneshgahi Publication.
Khozaei, F., Safizadeh, M., Afhami, R. & Sanusi Hassan, A. (2019).  Revising The Influence Of Persian, Indian And Chinese Motifs On The Architectural Decorations Of Kerman From The Safavid Time To Present. Bagh-e Nazar, 16(72), 65-80.
Kiani, M. (2004). Memari-yeDowre-ye Pahlavi-ye Aval [Architecture of the first Pahlavi period].Tehran: MoasseseMotale’at-e Tarikh Mo’aser Iran Publication.
NezamnameAbniyeShahr-e Darulaman. (1923). Kabul: DaireTahrirat-e Majles AlayeVozara.
Parsipoor, H. &Zia Tavana, M.H. (2014). Postmodernism and city with emphasis on urban designing and planning patterns. PazoheshvaBarnemeRiziShahri, 4(13), 57-76.
Pourahmad, A. & Mousavi, S. (2010). The Social Nature of an Islamic City. Shahr-e Irani Islami,1(2), 1-11.
Pourahmad, A., Faraji Molayee, A., Manouchehri, A. & Azimi, A. (2012). Tasir-e Modernism bar Tose’eh-yeFaza-ieKalbadi-yeShahr-ha-ye Irani-Islami (Nemoneh Tehran) [Effect of modernism on development of spacial- physical of Iranian-Islamic Cities (Tehran as case study)]. Shahr-e Irani Islami, 2(6), 47-61.
Pourzargar, M. R., Abedini, H. & Etemadi, A. (2020). The Contribution of “Street” Component in the Process of Modernization and the Development of Tehran, Case Study: The Lalehzar Street. Bagh-e Nazar, 17 (91), 5-16.
Ravan Farhadi,A.Gh. (1999). Moqalat-e Mahmud Tarzi [Articles of Mahmud Tarzi]. Kabul: Foreign minister of Islamic Republic of Afghanistan Publication.
Saidi Rezvani, N. (1992). Shahr-NeshinivaShahrsazidardowre-ye Bist-Saleh 1300-1320 [Urbanization and urban construction in twenty years period (from 1921 to 1941)]. Geographical researches, 7(2), 140-165.
Salnameh Kabul [Calender of Kabul]. (1937). Kabul: Anjomane Adabi.
Shirazian, R. (2016). Atlas of old Tehran. Tehran: Dastan Publication.
 Shammaei, A. (2010). The Role Of Traditional Urban Planning Patterns In The Modern Urban Planning In Yazd. Studies of Iranian Islamic city, 1(1), 93-105.
Sodagar, M. R. (1978). Roshd-e RavabetSarmaye Dari dar Iran (Marhal-e Enteqali) [The growth of capitalism in Iran (Transitional stage)].Tehran: Pazhand Publication.
TakmilHomayon, N. (2006). Tarikh-e EjtemaievaFarhangi Tehran: azAghaz ta Daralkhelafe-yeNaseri [Social and cultural history of Tehran: From the beginning till Daralkhelafe Naseri]. Tehran: Daftar Pazhohesh-ha-ye Farhangi Publication.
 Ziari, K. & Yousefi, A. (2003). Tose’e-ye Kalbadi-ye Tehran darFarayand-e Modernism, Post-Modernism vaJahani-Shodan [Physical Development Of Tehran In The Process Of Modernism, Postmodernism And Globalization]. Modarres, 7(2), 125-140.
Vazini Afzal, M. (2019). Pahlavi's Modernist Policies in Urban Structure and Its Impact on Historical Urban Fabric (Case Study: Yazd City, 1310-1332 Ah). Journal of History of Islam and Iran, 29(42), 173-197.
Yazdani, M. H. & Pourahmad A. (2007). The Influence Of Modernism Upon The Physical Transformation Of Iranian-Islamic Cities (Tabriz as Case Study). Geographical research, 22(1), 29-52.