Scales of Syria, a symposium on the Syrian crisis at the Harvard Graduate School of Design
As the Syrian civil war continues to unfold without resolution, the refugee crisis it has fueled has had a dramatic impact on most of the world today. Populations are fleeing the fierce fighting to countries as close as Jordan, Lebanon, and Greece and as far as Germany, Finland, and Canada. In view of the unprecedented scale of exodus—now surpassing that of Europe during and in the wake of World War II—this symposium will offer a set of reflections on displacement from local to remote territories. While the Syrian diaspora has come to be redefined in global terms, Syria’s own future remains intimately connected to its countryside. What does it mean to re-establish roots in this context? How do we grapple with the complex ways in which displacement has affected, and been affected by, the Syrian countryside? As a potential ground for refuge, one of the most significant aspects of that countryside, which composes the vast majority of Syrian land, is that it remains unexplored: agriculture, technology, archaeology, and infrastructure are all waiting to happen.