First Thought Talk with Marwa Al-Sabouni

Despite the destruction of large parts of her city, 35-year–old Syrian architect and mother of two, Marwa Al–Sabouni has remained in Homs with her husband and children throughout the war.

As part of Galway International Arts Festival's 2017 series of First Thought Talks, the Homs native, who has a PhD in Islamic Architecture, sits down with Dr Mary Gilmartin from NUI Maynooth to discuss what it’s like to live and work in Syria and what she considers the power of home.

Marwa also talks about her recent book, 'The Battle for Home', where she explores the role architecture and the built environment play in whether a community crumbles or comes together, and she offers insights on how her country (and a much–needed sense of identity) should be rebuilt so that it will not happen again.

Philosopher Roger Scruton, quoted in The Guardian, describes 'The Battle for Home' as “the work of a profound thinker” and “the expression of a beautiful soul who comes to us with… a message of hope.”