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Tuesday, April 11, 2006


The first thing I noticed when I entered Jordan University several years ago was the plethora of quite hideous signage ligning up the walls of most of its buildings- official signage posted by the university staff, inofficial signs posted by students, as well as plenty of Islamist "graffiti" in the form of stickers. With time, I came to realize that each building (usually representing different faculties) has sort of developed its own style of signage that sets it apart from the rest, both in content and style, and I became really fascinated with the chaos of JU's infographics, watching out for new signs in the buildings I took classes in.

You see, I grew up in a very "organized" way. In the highschool I went to for example, they were very peculiar about visual pollution and the fact that tape may leave marks on walls. The only form of signage you could see was perfectly printed plates of metal screwed to the tiled walls, sort of like this sign, minus the curves and the stuff sticking out.

Comparatively, the signage rules at Jordan University are non-existant, you can literally fill the walls with anything you want before someone else decides that his/her signs are more worthy of wall space.

This post is meant to take a look at the signage in the Physics Department, which I have the pleasure of taking 3 classes in (thus, I spend at least 3 hours a day there). The Physics Department's signage is quite great when compared to signage in other departments, notably the Engineering Department, the Languages Department, and the Islamic Shareea' Department. For one thing, they use the simplest form possible, mainly Sharpies, scotch tape, and colored paper. The content circles around silence and smoking, and there is also a notable lack of Islamist graffitti, which is more than I can say for most other departments.

On smoking:

"Smoking Not Allowed- Don't be the reason of the harm of others"

zooksie 980

zooksie 975
"This Building is Smoke Free"

On Silence:

zooksie 979
"Please maintain silence"

zooksie 977
"Sitting on the stairs is not allowed"

zooksie 976
"Grouping in hallways is not allowed"

Islamist Graffitti:
zooksie 978
"Mohammad- our souls are yours. Defend your Prophet. Al-Omareya Schools"

zooksie 974
"The Martyr the Shaikh Ahmad Yassin, was martyred during a cowardly assassination on Monday, the 13th of March, 2004. The Islamic Front, The Departments of Science and Information Technology"

bay 973
"The story of a nation that never died and will never die. The Islamic Student Union"

hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh 018
"It is not permissible to enter these rooms, there are tools that are (illegible word)."

zooksie 972
"To the phsyics labs of first year students"

hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh 016
"Important Notice * * *
This lab is only for the use of the following students:
- Graduate Students/ Computer Physics
- Al-Rozam Il Barmajeyah
- Fine Arts and Design Department"

hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh 013
"Pretty Loozan"

Ok, the one above isn't a sign, it was drawn by a fellow design student on one of the chalkboards in the department, but it's been there for a while...

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