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Project description

“La fabrique du Caire moderne” (Twitter: @cairemoderne) is a pilot project about urban development, architecture, Euro-Mediterranean entanglements and global investment in Cairo in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Its main goal is to combine thorough archival research with historical topographic iconography, using digital tools (visualization, GIS and TEI-XML texts), in order to produce a global urban history of the Egyptian capital.


“La fabrique du Caire moderne” is jointly supported by Institut français d’archéologie orientale (Ifao, Cairo), L’information visuelle et textuelle en histoire de l’art : nouveaux terrains, corpus, outils – InVisu (CNRS, INHA, Paris), the History Department of Duke University (USA) and the Hungarian Cultural Institute in Cairo. Between 2019 and 2021, the project was also supported by the Franklin Humanities Institute and the Office of Global Affairs / Andrew W. Mellon Endowment for Global Studies. In 2022, the “Digital Cairo” sub-project received a two-year (2022-2024) research grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (see separate page).


The project co-directors are Prof. Mercedes Volait (Invisu, CNRS) and Prof. Adam Mestyan (Duke University).


Present team members:

Ghislaine Alleaume (researcher)

Dina Bakhoum (researcher)

Hugh Cayless (TEI-XML advisor, senior programmer)

Sarah Gaara (research assistant, TEI XML markup)

Rezk Nuri (researcher)

And all the participants of the “Digital Cairo” sub-project between 2022-2024, see the separate page.


Previous participants:

Danah Younis (TEI-XML markup)

Nour Kanaan (TEI-XML markup)

Julie Erismann (metadata system design)

Bulle Tuil Leonetti (metadata collection)

Pierre Mounier (metadata system design)

Karima Nasr (doctoral student, research assistant)


In this trilingual blog we shall publish (Arabic, French, or English) posts with news about the project and as a public outreach, a description of an image or a document monthly. The images are from various albums. The albums form part of Max Karkègi’s (d. 2011) collection, which are today at the BnF and also available in digital form at Gallica.