Ghalya Alsanea

Transforming a traditional spatial practice to empower women, immigrants and marganalized people in Kuwait


Can we learn from and adapt the systems and core ideas of the Diwaniyya, an already established structure for mediating between Kuwait’s civic, political and economic spheres, to be more inclusive to women, immigrants and people otherwise excluded from decision-making power by researching past to current Diwaniyyas to create taxonomy of Diwaniyyas, analyze physical aspects and how they changed, and looking into their relationship to government and people?


First is to research and create documentation of past to current Diwaniyyas. This includes developing taxonomy of Diwaniyyas, physical

aspects and how they change, and their relationship to government and people.

Second is to look into political theory and develop a manifesto titled: “Public” Education: A Manifesto on How the Public Learns. This analyzes how the public learns from each other to be more tolerant and respectful towards each other, and how, we as designers can create intelligent learning spaces that enables this exchange in our public sphere. The manifesto also looks into how political expression manifests itself in space, and how people interact to push for social and political justice.

Third is to do current analysis of the present-day diwaniyya and look at case studies and why they failed/worked. From this knowledge, I am developping a design that has a base and movable element. The final design is a Deployable Diwaniyya that can adapt and be deployed to different locations around Kuwait and can adapt to meet current needs (ie. a moving clinic, or a political campaign shelter for women, or to host discussions that affect a certain subset of the population). The idea here is to slowly legitimize people in the political process by creating spaces that allow them to express opinions and gather.

To Be Continued...