The pluralism of the Fatimids created a society “of an unprecedented creative vitality”

His Highness the Aga Khan with Professor Marianne Barrucand (Photo: AKDN)
His Highness the Aga Khan with Professor Marianne Barrucand (Photo: AKDN)

“….the art and culture of the Fatimids is the expression of a remarkably tolerant multireligious and multiethnic society, the source of impressive material prosperity and of an unprecedented creative vitality.”
Marianne Barrucand
Professor of Islamic Art and Archaeology at the Sorbonne and editor of L’Egypte Fatimide: Son Art et Son Histoire
AKDN Press Release dated December 3, 1999

The Fatimids, after all, prided themselves on a broadly inclusive approach to knowledge. What they founded here would become a truly global city – to use contemporary parlance. Pluralism was indeed the hallmark of a Golden Age of the City Victorious 1000 years ago.”
His Highness the Aga Khan
Inauguration of the Restored Monuments in Darb al-Ahmar, Cairo, Egypt
October 26, 2007
Speech at Press Centre, AKDN

His Highness the Aga Khan addressing the Urban Land Institute in Paris. - Photo: ULI / Karla Gowlett
His Highness the Aga Khan addressing the Urban Land Institute in Paris. – Photo: ULI / Karla Gowlett

The Fatimids are remembered for drawing, pluralistically, on the widest array of talent, from all cultures, in developing a great civilization. One of the ways I have tried to reflect this history has been to encourage the development of world class planning and design resources, including programmes such as the Aga Khan Award for Architecture and the Aga Khan Programme for Islamic Architecture at Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.”
His Highness the Aga Khan 
Urban Land Institute’s Annual Conference Leadership Dinner, Paris, France
January 31, 2012
Speech at Press Centre, AKDN

Compiled by Nimira Dewji

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