February 2017


Jean-Louis Cohen - Memory Erased/Regained: Marseilles at War

  • Tuesday, 7 February 2017 - 6:00pm
British School at Rome - Via Antonio Gramsci 61
“The Marseille population witnesses the Nazi destruction of the Old Harbor area, January 1943.” Source: Bundesarchiv, Berlin

Published in 2011, Jean-Louis Cohen’s book Architecture in Uniform has recast the accepted vision that saw the Second Word War as an empty period for architecture. Cohen has instead highlighted the many ways it allowed for the victory of modernity. In this lecture, he will present his new research that assesses how these ideas hold true in the case of Marseilles during the Vichy regime and its aftermath.

The cold-blooded destruction of the centre of Marseilles by the Nazis in 1943 and the subsequent reconstruction of the city, which involved, among others, Fernand Pouillon and Le Corbusier, are vibrant episodes in which memory was mobilized in all its manifestations, from the collective, as discussed by Maurice Halbwachs in those years, to the most intimate.

Jean-Louis Cohen is the Louis Kahn Scholar in Residence at the American Academy in Rome in the spring of 2017 and Sheldon H. Solow Professor in the History of Architecture at the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University.

The lecture will be held in English.

The event is organized in collaboration with the British School at Rome and is part of their Architecture Programme: Meeting Architecture III: FRAGMENTS.