Before the War, War, After the War Urban Imageries for Urban Resilience – Armina Pilav

Abstract This article discusses urban conditions in cities that in
their recent history experienced war. It puts the social component of
the city into relationship with the destroyed and dangerous urban
environment. In the period between 1992 and 1996 in Sarajevo and
in other Bosnian cities, survival became the most important activity
for citizens. In the period directly preceding the war, urban conditions—
mobility, infrastructure, and services—started to malfunction.
As a result, ordinary city life became an object of new urban
imageries influenced by new urban conditions and rules of behavior.
The first bombing of the city on 6 April 1992 was a sign that the war
had started. It brought with it war urban conditions: lack of public
transport, electricity, water, and food. The inability of the city and
the people living in it to function normally demanded new patterns
of urban resilience, which were partly a product of the city’s prewar
conditions. Using Sarajevo as a case study, this article examines
whether the city had predisaster coping strategies and, if so, the
extent to which these plans were used during the war. Finally, the
article observes how citizens, with their own imageries about cities,
can participate in the creation of patterns of urban resilience and
future predisaster strategies.
Keywords patterns of urban resilience, Sarajevo, urban
conditions, urban imageries, war

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