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Layers of History in Downtown Beirut

with Rayya Haddad | The modern history of Beirut has been defined by periods of intense construction, destruction, and reconstruction. In this episode, we explore the layers of history in Beirut's cityscape through a walking tour with Rayya Haddad. We chart Beirut's transformation from its rise as a late Ottoman capital through the expansion of the port during the French Mandate period, its golden age as a commercial center in independent Lebanon during the 1950s and 60s, the long civil war that lasted from 1975 to 1990, and the postwar reconstruction carried out by the company Solidere. We also explore the history of Beit Beirut, a unqiue building designed by Youssef Aftimus--Beirut's foremost architect of the late Ottoman and French Mandate period--from its Mediterranean revivalist origins to its redesign as a sniper's haven during the war, ending with its rescue and renovation by activists in recent decades. We conclude with some thoughts on what this

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