Elvira Ibragimova is currently a PhD candidate at the Central European University. Her doctoral project titled “Unrealized and Unrealizable: Architectural Projects and Ideas in Interwar Belgrade and Zagreb”. She holds a specialist degree in Political Science from the Moscow State University, a master’s degree in Art History from the European University at Saint Petersburg and a master’s degree in History from the Central European University.
Archaeological knowledge and formation of urban spaces in Belgrade
The proposed paper analyses the role of archaeological knowledge and investigation of cultural heritage in the formation of urban space and architecture development. The presented case study is Belgrade from 1918 until now, as a capital of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, socialist Yugoslavia and nowadays Serbia. The first part investigates how the construction of knowledge about archaeological sites and cultural heritage influenced the image and shape of the city. On the one hand, the knowledge was instrumentalized in order to embody desired identity (Yugoslav or Serbian one) or promote Belgrade’s image as a historical site. On the other hand, the knowledge was an obstacle to the realization of urban projects and thus was neglected. The second part analyses how the participation of archaeologists and art historians in urban planning and public debates about city development changed over time. I investigated Belgrade’s transformation in three cases: the capitals of royal Yugoslavia, socialist Yugoslavia and the Republic of Serbia. Also, I compared how various political regimes influenced the role of these disciplines and their visibility in the urban spaces.