Throughout the ages, human civilizations have constructed awe-inspiring structures, each one a testament to their ingenuity and creativity. From the pyramids of Egypt to the skyscrapers of today, the world is dotted with structures that captivate and inspire people everywhere.
Source: 9 Most Fascinating Buildings in the World – Finance Quick Fix
The Covid-19 pandemic will long be remembered for the lockdowns it imposed and the millions of lives it stole. A recent Unesco report reveals that it has also took a large toll on world heritage sites.
Source: Looting and decay: how the pandemic wrought real damage to African heritage
Each year the residents of a modest town in central Mali work together to preserve one of the most iconic structures in both Islamic and African architectural history: the Great Mosque of Djenne, the world’s largest mud-brick structure.
Source: The World’s Largest Mud-Brick Building Is A Mosque Rebuilt Every Year – The Westside Gazette
This gesture is the outcome of a 2017 judgment by the ICC on Ahmad Al Faqi Al Mahdi.
Source: Mali, UNESCO to Receive a ‘Symbolic Euro’ for Timbuktu Heritage Destruction
UNESCO will restore the world heritage site of Bandiagara, in central Mali, which has been hit hard by the country’s long-running conflict.
Source: UNESCO will restore Mali’s conflict-hit Bandiagara site
With four UNESCO World Heritage sites, Mali used to be one of Africa’s top tourist destinations…
Source: Why War-Torn Mali Is Looking to China to Revive Tourism
Several thousand residents of the historic central Malian city of Djenne, a UNESCO World Heritage site, took part in the annual rendering ceremony of the Grand Mosque, which will now be powered by solar electricity. The rendering of the building with banco (a mixture of soil and water, with rice bran, shea butter and baobab powder) made by the city’s inhabitants, helps to protect the mosque from bad weather ahead of the rainy season. The Grand Mosque in the Malian city of Djenne described as “the largest adobe…
Source: Rendering Ceremony of the Historic Grand Mosque in Mali | Al Bawaba
The city of Djenne in Central Mali has been on UNESCO’s World Heritage list since 1988.
Source: Mali: Thousands take part in annual Grand mosque plaster
Genetic and paleontological findings have concluded that Africa is the birthplace of the entire human race. Africa is often thought of as a continent rich in natural beauty and…
Source: Technology in sub-Saharan Cultures
Beyond Timbuktu: Preserving the Manuscripts of Djenne, Mali is a new initiative from the British Library’s Endangered Archives Programme…
Source: British Library’s Endangered Archives Programme sheds new light on the history of Africa and Islam
This West African city—long synonymous with the uttermost end of the Earth—was added to the World Heritage List in 1988, many centuries after its apex.Timbuktu was a center of Islamic scholarship under several African empires, home to a 25,000-student university and other madrasahs that served as wellsprings for the spread of Islam throughout Africa from the 13th to 16th centuries. Sacred Muslim texts, in bound editions, were carried great distances to Timbuktu for the use of eminent scholars from Cairo, Baghdad, Persia, and elsewhere who were in residence at the city. The great teachings of Islam, from astronomy and mathematics to medicine and law, were collected and produced here in several hundred thousand manuscripts. Many of them remain, though in precarious condition, to form a priceless written record of African history. Read more here.
Source: See the Striking Earthen City of Timbuktu
Mali – Timbuktu
The shrines of Muslim saints in Timbuktu in northern Mali are widely believed to protect the fabled city from danger, but were largely destroyed by radical Islamists in 2012.
Mali – Tomb of Askia
The Tomb of Askia, in Gao, Mali, is believed to be the burial place of Askia Mohammad I, one of the Songhai Empire’s most prolific emperors. It was built at the end of the fifteenth century and is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Tomb of Askia is a secular monument that shares both the cultural and religious heritage of Mali.
The pyramid-shaped tomb also functions as a Mosque and is located in the northern town of Gao.
The archaeological site was built by Askia Mohammad I, a famous emperor of Songhai who reigned between the 15th and 16th century.
It is his burial place as Mohamed Soumaïlou Traoré, a cultural animator explains. “It is known as the Tomb of Askia, as a mosque, because Askia himself is buried here. Many of his sons, grandchildren, daughters are buried here.
Mali – Cliff of Bandiagara (Land of the Dogons)
“Vernacular architecture can be said to be ‘the architectural language of the people’ with its ethnic, regional, and local ‘dialects,’” writes Paul Oliver, author of The Encyclopaedia of Vernacular Architecture of The World. Unfortunately, there has been a growing disregard for traditional architectural language around the world due to modern building technology quickly spreading a “loss of identity and cultural vibrancy” through what the Architectural Review recently described as “a global pandemic of generic buildings.”
People have come to see steel, concrete, and glass as architecture of high quality, whereas a lot of vernacular methods including adobe, reed, or peat moss are often associated with underdevelopment. Ironically, these local methods are far more sustainable and contextually aware than much contemporary architecture seen today, despite ongoing talks and debates about the importance of sustainability.
Timbuktu was once one of Africa’s greatest cities, but centuries of war, colonial rule and, more recently, radical terrorism has taken a toll on its historic buildings. Now, thanks to efforts by Unesco and the town’s citizens, these important buildings are being restored to their former glory.
Source: Saving Timbuktu: rebuilding history in Africa’s ancient city | Brand South Africa
What is life like in Mali’s ‘city in the middle of nowhere’? Guardian photographer Sean Smith recently spent a week there, meeting everyone from Timbuktu’s chief muezzin to its only DJ…
Source: Timbuktu: portrait of a city on the edge of existence – in pictures