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The Evolution of the Hajj

The annual pilgrimage of Muslims to Mecca, The Hajj, is among the largest peaceful gatherings with 3.1 million Muslims completing the Hajj in 2012. The Hajj is completed over five days from the 8th to the 12th of Dhu al-Hijjah, the final month of the Islamic calender. In modern times, the Hajj is strictly organized and controlled by the government of Saudi Arabia, however, the Hajj that is presented today is very different than the Hajj experienced by earlier pilgrims.

This project is intended to explore how the Hajj has changed from the 7th century C.E. to modern times. The project is divided into four sections: the origins in the Hajj in the time of the Prophet Muhammad and the first few centuries after his death, the Hajj in the 13th century using the travel narrative of Ibn Jubayr, the Modern Hajj, and how the physical and religious spaces of Mecca are organized.

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