Current Projects





To date, Dr. Patel’s scholarly publications include a monograph, articles in peer-reviewed journals and edited volumes. In 2004, EJ Brill of Leiden, The Netherlands published Dr. Patel's first book, titled Building Communities in Gujarat: Architecture and Society during the Twelfth through Fourteenth Centuries. Her articles on the Islamic architecture of South Asia have appeared in Archives of Asian Art, Marg, The Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians and other venues. Also in 2004, Dr. Patel was guest editor of volume XXXIV (2004)of the esteemed journal Ars Orientalis. This 50th-anniversary volume is a thematic issue, titled Communities and Commodities: Western India and the Indian Ocean, 11th-15th Centuries, bringing together a selection of papers presented at Dr. Patel’s Michigan conference (2002) of the same name. Dr. Patel’s most recent edited volume is the beautifully illustrated Architecture of the Indian Sultanates, published by Marg Publications in Mumbai, India (2006).

        Dr. Patel’s current projects both capitalize on her regional and chronological expertise and, through collaboration with other colleagues, aim to expand it. Dr. Patel’s second book project, titled The Ghurid Architecture of South Asia and Historiography at the Ends of the Islamic World, will treat the Ghurids (ca.1149-1215), the first enduring Islamic rulership east of the Indus, and their architectural foundations throughout northern India. Expanding beyond this time period is her forthcoming volume The History and Historiography of Reuse in South Asia (ed. Alka Patel). This will be a collaborative project gathering the contributions of eight other scholars of South Asia, encompassing various time periods and media of production. The work will be published as a thematic issue of Archives of Asian Art with the journal’s volume LIX (2009) dedicated to the topic. Concurrently with these endeavors, Dr. Patel conducted preliminary fieldwork toward a project titled Building New Identities in the Diaspora: The Banking and Mercantile Communities of Hyderabad, India ca. 1730-1940 (see Current Projects). In this project, Dr. Patel will work with historian and anthropologist Dr. Karen Leonard (University of California, Irvine) to analyze the architectural patronage of  the 18th and 19th-century merchant and banker communities throughout their ancestral lands in northern India and the Diaspora of Hyderabad where they forged new “homes.”

        Dr. Patel has also received scholarly recognition in the form of a number of prestigious fellowships supporting her research and fieldwork. Between 2003 through 2005, she was a Senior Fellow at the American Institute of Indian Studies (Chicago and New Delhi) conducting fieldwork in India toward her book The Ghurid Architecture of South Asia and Historiography at the Ends of the Islamic World. Dr. Patel was also a National Endowment for the Humanities scholar (2005) for research toward the book.