This study brings together the disciplines of medicine, horticulture and poetry in seventeenth-century Islamic India. First published in 2000, the new edition features high quality illustrations, a partially revised text, and an introduction by William Dalrymple that adds to the coherence of the work and helps to situate it in the historical and cultural context of the Deccan.
Scent in the Islamic Garden considers scent to be of particular significance in Islam and examines its importance in Islamic cultures in terms of landscape expressions in Islamic India. As one of the last bastions of Islamic culture in peninsular India, Hyderabad, within the larger region of the Deccan, is the particular focus of the study, and the genre of seventeenth-century garden poetry in the Deccani Urdu tradition is one of the means for examining landscape expressions at Hyderabad and, more generally, in the Deccan.Utilising literary texts, this study exemplifies the syncretic nature of the Deccani gardens, which were Persian in inspiration but rooted in India and permeated with the rasas of the Indian forests. The idea that scents, by enhancing sensory perception, were a cue for certain kinds of behaviour in garden settings is also argued.
|Following architectural studies at the University of Minnesota, USA, Ali Akbar Husain spent some years teaching architecture at the National College of Arts, Lahore, Pakistan, before pursuing an interest in landscape architecture through doctoral research at the University of Edinburgh, UK. He then taught and researched at the King Abdulaziz University, Saudi Arabia, MIT (as a Visiting Scholar), the Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico, and the American University of Beirut, Lebanon. He returned to Pakistan at the end of 2008 to manage the undergraduate architectural programme at the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, Karachi.|