Public Talks

A series of public talks were run on a number of days throughout the festival in an area of the building adjacent to the Qasr al Hosn fort. 

The talks started at 7pm, and lasted 45 minutes. They could be registered for on the day.

Qasr Al Hosn: The Oldest Political Symbol
February 22

Speaker: Ghaya Al Dhaheri

A discussion about the historical, social and political importance of Qasr Al Hosn, which was a building for living and hospitality, and a place where the rulers met with elders in the community to resolve problems and discuss external risks. Given its central social and political function, it was a focus of attention for major powers in the region, and an icon that, to this day, represents the prestige of the Emirate among neighboring countries.

Qasr al Hosn: Guests Throughout History
February 24

Speakers: Zaki Nusseibeh and Dr. Frauke Heard-Bey

This talk brought together historians to share their knowledge and views of visiting politicians, travelers and other guests of Qasr al Hosn, and esteemed figures who were themselves guests of Qasr al Hosn during the 54 years ruled by Sheikh Zayed the first.

Qasr al Hosn: Current and Future Socio-Cultural Significance
February 25

Speaker: Hassan Al Naboodah

Qasr al Hosn has a significant role to play within UAE society, serving to strengthen the authentic values of the region and to establish closer ties between members of the community.  Considering its established position in Abu Dhabi’s history, this talk focused on the importance of Qasr al Hosn from both historical and cultural points of view.

Qasr al Hosn: Construction and Development Stages
February 26

Speakers: Mark Kyffin, Hossam Mahmoud and Peter Sheehan

A special look at the various construction and development stages of Qasr al Hosn, beginning with the reign of Sheikh Dhiyab Bin Isa who built the first tower, through to Sheikh Shakhboot bin Dhiyab, who built the adjacent square, and finally to the big expansion of the fort by Sheikh Shakhboot bin Sultan Al Nahyan.

Qasr al Hosn: The Core of Building Abu Dhabi, the Capital
February 28

Speakers: Dr. Rashed Al Mazrouei and Dr Abdullah Al Rais

This talk discussed the importance of Qasr al Hosn as a symbol that reflects the development of Abu Dhabi, and as a monument that represents the development of the capital city before and after the discovery of oil.