Phenomenology: A Methodology for Understanding Traditional Architecture

Document Type : Research Article


1 Ph. D. Candidate in Architecture, Faculty of Architecture & urban planning, Islamic Azad University, central Tehran branch.

2 Faculty Member, Department of Architecture, Faculty of Architecture & Urban Planning, Islamic Azad University, Central Tehran Branch.

3 Faculty of Literature and Humanities, Isfahan university, Isfahan, Iran.


Problem Statement: This article aims at disclosing an authentic essence of traditional architecture and show how it can be approached. Not much exists on this issue and our knowledge is limited to misconceptions. As a result, we have faced absurdity and chaos in contemporary architecture. This problem has been exacerbated by an inappropriate method and superficial responses.
Objective: The goal of this study is to present an appropriate and comprehensive method to examine the traditional architecture and to uncover its truth. We assume that phenomenology can address the methodological issues regarding the essence of traditional architecture.
Research methodology: After reviewing pertinent literature systematically and interpreting them, we attempted to use logical reasoning to find an appropriate method for traditional architecture and fill the gap in the existing literature on the phenomenological method.
Conclusion: The results of this research indicate that conceptual thinking and scientific and quantitative approach to works of architecture will not guide us to architecture’s fundamental. Instead, we need to refer to the artworks and approach them with empathy to find a common language with those works to uncover their fundamental concepts and hidden implications. The way we choose to reach a better understanding of traditional architecture consists of seven steps or stages: (1) Wonder and search, (2) Revelation of the universe, (3) Mental refinement, (4) Environmental identity, (5) Phenomenological grasp of the environment, (6) Finding a language for assertions, and (7) Uncovering the hidden meanings.


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