Reference : Ask the Periphery – a vantage point for understanding city and nationalism relations
Scientific congresses and symposiums : Unpublished conference/Abstract
Arts & humanities : History
Ask the Periphery – a vantage point for understanding city and nationalism relations
Farah, Jihad mailto [Université de Liège - ULiège > Institut des sciences humaines et sociales > Criminologie >]
Teller, Jacques mailto [Université de Liège - ULiège > Département Argenco : Secteur A&U > Urbanisme et aménagement du territoire >]
City and Nationalism
9-10 February 2012
Centre for Research in Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities - Cambridge University
United Kingdom
[en] Nationalism ; Periphery ; Beirut ; Communities ; geo-history
[en] Studies on nationalism were often interested with the city, especially the city centers. The
politics of heritage, the architecture of public buildings and the design and use of central
public spaces are often studied in relation to national identity politics. Municipal politics of
the historical city in the face of central authorities’ urban politics is also frequently
approached in the light of Nation-State building issues. If no doubt the consideration of city
centers as a vantage point for understanding the relation between nationalism and the city is
an interesting one that bore many fruits, we believe that a vantage point concentrating on the
peripheries can highly contribute in unveiling other aspects of this relation. This paper aims at
investigating the potentialities of this contribution.
As the place where urbanization is taking place, the periphery is:
- Where the national identity construction logic is put to test. First because, historically,
it is here where the confrontation between the urban and the rural did first take place.
Second, because rural exodus and migration, usually more important in the periphery,
will continue to challenge it.
- Where the city and the hinterland get connected through different national territory
building networks.
- Where the Nation-State central authorities will find the largest land reserves to
develop their large emblematic projects.
- Where urban fragmentation poses the strongest challenge to the unitarian message of
nationalism, but also is where some nationalist movements might best develop
In fact, the periphery represents equally a fertile ground for nationalism and for resistances to
This paper will rely on the city of Beirut as a case study.
Local Environment Management and Analysis laboratory - University of Liege ; Lepur : Centre de Recherche sur la Ville, le Territoire et le Milieu rural
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