This lesson introduces students to one of the most iconic monuments in the world: the Taj Mahal. It emphasizes the theme of cross-cultural encounter throughout. The lecture begins by laying out historical coordinates, with slide and lecture points on the Mughal empire (1526-1858), the patron Emperor Shah Jahan (r. 1627-58), his wife Mumtaz Mahal (d. 1631) (the interred), and the architect Ustad Ahmad Lahori (d.1649). It then introduces students to the urban context of Mughal Agra and the site specific aspects of the broader Taj Mahal complex.
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