Sara Ebrahimi

Supervisor: Dr Samantha Martin-McAuliffe

School: Architecture

Evangelistic Agency: An Architectural-Informed Analysis of the Church Missionary Society (CMS) hospitals in Iran.

My research provides, for the first time, an architectural-informed analysis of the Anglican Church Missionary Society (CMS) hospital in Iran. They were built in Isfahan, Yazd, Kerman and Shiraz. I argue that they bore welcoming architectural features; they were designed to greet the patients and win their trust and confidence. According to the CMS medical policy, hospitals sought to “attract men”; they were the means to establish “a bond of sympathy and confidence”. Moreover, analyzing the architecture of these hospitals, this research also discusses about the role of the CMS medical work in the British Empire Building. In particular, I draw on the relationship between the idea of trust and imperialism.  As a part of my research, I will also document the number, location and foundation date of the CMS hospitals from 1865 to 1939 in a catalogue. The development of this catalogue is not only crucial for my own research but it will also serve as a foundation for all future work on the CMS hospitals, both in terms of the architecture and medical work more generally.

Funding Information: Funded by an Irish Research Council, Government of Ireland Scholarship, 2015-2017; Society for Architectural Historian of Great Britain research grant, fall 2015