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The Symbolic Significance of Architecture
The Symbolic Significance of Architecture

Author(s): Inna Vershinina, Artemiy Kurbanov
Subject(s): Essay|Book Review |Scientific Life
Published by: Editura Lumen, Asociatia Lumen
Keywords: urban studies; space; “places of memory”; symbolic legacy of cities; capitals; Moscow; Bucharest; metropolitan cities; Eastern Europe.
Summary/Abstract: he article deals with the process of cities’ changes considered in the context of the formation and transformation of historical and cultural memory. Every moment of a city’s existence is a combination of “places of memory”. Each of them plays its role in the general symbolic ensemble. Urban development is connecting with transformation of social and political systems. Any social and political change is expressed by creation of new and destruction of old “places of memory” in the urban space. This connection becomes even more evident if we study the history and contemporary state of the capital cities. Traditionally, capitals bear a maximum symbolic load. The development of Moscow during the Soviet period shows how architectural solutions and urban space in general express the new socialist ideology. Soviet authorities strove to affirm their values and priorities with all the means they had, including the new image of communist Moscow. The collapse of Soviet regime became a new stage of development of the urban space. For certain architectural facilities, a fragile border between oblivion and destruction and preservation of an architectural monument with its official acknowledgment depends on multiple circumstances. These include purely pragmatic aspects related to the cost of preservation and reconstruction of the facility, ideological aspects as far as many facilities are a live reminder of the past that is sometimes rather embarrassing. The destiny of “houses-communes” in post-Soviet Moscow and Casa Parlamentului in Bucharest can serve as examples. The article concludes that the process of accelerated modernization changed the face of metropolitan cities in Eastern Europe.

  • Page Range: 992-1006
  • Page Count: 15
  • Publication Year: 2017
  • Language: English