املاک، بانکداری و جنگ: ساخت و ساز و بازسازی بیروت
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Cities, Volume 69, September 2017, Pages 73-78
In urban studies scholarship, Beirut is often theorized on the frontiers of sectarian conflict as well as on the frontlines of neoliberalism. Entangling real estate, banking and transnational financial circulations, managed by the Banque du Liban, its political economy was â and still is â swayed by the fortunes of war. According to literature on the political economy of violence, profits are often made in times of conflict, a context appropriate to the civil war and postwar eras, during which the spoils of war enriched the pockets of warlords-turned-politicians. Yet as the fighting in Syria spills over the border, encumbering Lebanon's long paralyzed politics and straining Beirut's already deteriorated infrastructure, its political economy prospers â if only for a few â not because of violence but in spite of it. Beirut's skyline is covered in construction cranes erecting affluent, if empty, apartments; the banks are infused with deposits invested in the debt of a sovereign bankrupt in ways not simply financial. Both sectors are said to be resilient, a discourse so often repeated that resilience has become the dominant mode by which Beirut is understood. Excavating these discourses, this article presents Beirut's political economy as an assemblage of real estate investment, sovereign debt and emigration, and in so doing theorizes the Banque du Liban as a city builder fusing the political and the economic into an apparatus of transnational investment.