© Inventer le Grand Paris

Paris-Berlin Workshop : Gross Berlin, Geschichtesschreibung und Stadtpolitik

This seminar aims to examine conjunctural interferences between the historiographical work on the Greater Berlin (social history and urban forms) and the narrative of the politicians and makers of the city (elected, edible and architects).
This proposal is based on the empirical observation that in Berlin, at crucial moments of its metropolitan development, there has been a strong mutual involvement between academics, designers and actors.

This was noticeable in the years following the Reunification when expert and academics groups – historians, mediators and architects – were solicited by the Senate of Construction and / or Urbanism to justify a specific doctrine for the urban projects, that of "Critical Reconstruction". At the same time that, a historical "Revision" was taking place towards the architectural legacy of East Germany.
Going back decades of the last century, we found similar implications, but conversely, they have served the modernist discourse in favor of demolition and urban renewal.
We will try to present the conditions of this "history in debate", particularly lively in Berlin: ie the epistemological stakes and the institutional positioning of historians when they participate as actors in the transformations of the present time. We will try to mirror, for Berlin, the interrogation of Marc Bloch on the part of engagement of the historians in their time.

Our Berlin colleagues will therefore be asked to shed more light on :

- The current themes of research on the history of Greater Berlin and emerging issues, according to the scientific fields.
- The crossing of agendas of historians and political actors for the century of Greater Berlin (1920-2120).

Scientific Organization : Corinne Jaquand

Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture de Paris-Belleville
Jeudi 21 février 2019 : 9h30-13h


Gross Berlin (1920), research project in the perspective of the jubilee of 2020 : the rediscovery of an unfinished metropolis

by Harald Bodenschatz

Greater Berlin started as the « Einheitsgemeinde Berlin » on 1 October 1920 – without much attention. On January 30th , 1933, the municipal project “Greater Berlin” has already failed. Nevertheless, within the 12 years, much has been achieved, but all the work was not really reflected. This concerned both urban planning and political-administrative activities. Between 1933 and 1989, the « Einheitsgemeinde Berlin » was a field of action for two dictatorships. It was…

Environment and city politics in Berlin around 1920 and 2000. Topics and actors of civil society and urban administration

by Dorothee Brantz

Berlin, much like Paris, has to deal with substantial environmental concerns regarding urban green spaces.  This presentation will trace the key environmental concerns as they existed around 1920 and contrast them with current agendas today.  What are common themes that have persisted over the past century and what differences have emerged during this time?  Who were the principle actors engaged in the debates over urban green spaces and what did…

Politics, architects and the construction industry in Berlin 1950-2000 : from the tabula rasa to soft urban renewal

by Markus Tubbesing

My contribution will be focused on the conjunction of actors when it comes to the question of urban development in Berlin, especially after World War II. At the time, was a complex conjunction between professional planners, politics, the interests of the building industry. Besides the public opinion which was mostly lacking after World War II. The following presentation deals the perimeter of the Hobrecht Plan of 1866 which we still…