“The Perception of Division and Border in Post-war Beirut”

Architecture Building, Room 402, Byblos campus

The lecture will be given by Mazen Haidar. The event coordinator is Dr. Maroun El-Daccache, chair of the Department of Architecture and Interior Design at LAU’s School of Architecture and Design.


The lecture will explore the historical evolution of demarcation lines and limits exploited in part during the civil conflict. Buffer zones, the “defensive stripes,” can be detected all over Lebanon and, according to their typology, these defensive areas assume different aspects and meanings.

  • What are the tangible and intangible characteristics of these divisions and how can they be recognized (architectural features, etc.)?
  • How can these limits contribute to safeguarding the country’s diversity and in what ways have they been taken into consideration after the civil conflict?
  • How can a generalized planning program help (or indeed hinder) the recovery amid this abundance of borders?

Focusing on projects concerning buffer zones and formal division lines, the lecture will explore the different meanings of common terms in post-war reconstruction such as “rehabilitation,” “reconstruction,” “recovery” and “rebirth.”

About the presenter

Mazen Haidar has an M.S. in Restoration (2009) from the School of Restoration of Monuments – La Sapienza University, Rome and an M.S. in Architecture (2005) from La Sapienza University, Rome. He has worked on many research projects and papers on various architecture and restoration topics and participated in various seminars on post-war reconstruction given in the undergraduate Architecture, Design Structural and Rehabilitation Program at La Sapienza. He is working currently as an expert in conservation in Lebanon on the restoration project of the Barakat Building, Beit Beirut. One of his publications is City & Memory, Beirut, Berlin, Sarajevo (Milan: Bruno Mondadori, 2006).