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Title: Towards Warsaw of the future : exhibiting, archiving and moving through architectural imaginaries
Author: Lesniak, Piotr Jerzy
ISNI:       0000 0004 6352 7264
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2017
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Thesis argument: There is a Culture of Violent Reductivism in Representing Warsaw, which means that: Warsaw is reduced to a symbol of heroism in the hands of God/History or the Expert; imagining is reduced to historic imaginary and by the same token futuristic imaginary; both based on a positivist-romanticist system of thought; the reductivism deploys philosemiotic violence (acts of offering with expectations attached); the reductivism/violence is a symptom of a ‘neurosis’ of the social national/imaginary; the reductivism stops Warsaw/Poland from imagining present and future more openly. An alternative is to represent Warsaw as a series of post-historical objects that: are discrete texts, singular images, drawings, physical objects; are paradigmatic and analogical; they move from specificity to specificity; offer different forms, where ‘form’ is non-objective and means relationship; are a series of critiques, reflections, descriptions that work as architectural hypotheses; represent three exemplar imaginaries of Warsaw (the Birth, the Rebirth, the Second Rebirth); together form a ‘distracted’ architectural archive of Warsaw’s imaginaries. In this way, the thesis posits an example of a methodology of representing Warsaw that opens the possibility for Warsaw/Poland to imagine itself differently. Key themes: Culture of violent reductivism in representing Warsaw, reduction of Warsaw to a symbol of heroism, domination of the historic futuristic imaginary, philosemi(o)tic violence, neurosis of the social imaginary (guilt), positivist romanticism, post-historical object, paradigmatic knowledge, non-objective form, seriality of representation, architectural hypothesis, three imaginaries of Warsaw, ‘distracted’ archive of imaginaries.
Supervisor: Chmielewska, Ella ; Wiszniewski, Dorian Sponsor: Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Warsaw ; architecture ; 20th century history ; imaginary