There has been many things written about the urban transformations of Paris orchestrated by Napoleon III’s prefect, the “Baron” Haussmann; many of which address the militarized causes of these transformations, as I often did myself. This aspect of the transformations is admitted by Haussmann himself in his memoirs as part of the strategy. The first part of the 19th-century saw many insurrections and revolutions happening in Paris (1830 revolution, 1832 insurrection, 1848 revolution, etc.) and Napoleon III, after his 1851 coup, was certainly eager to transform Paris to be able to control it. The large avenues and boulevards were thus seen as fundamental components of potential armed interventions of the national army against insurrections. The movement of the troops was thus maximized, the canons could have a clear aiming line, and the dense neighborhood of proletarian Paris were fragmented by these large urban canyons. Another militarized aspect of the transformation also lies in the systematic eminent domain authorized by a 1852 legislation that promises compensations for the moved population but gives it no choice but to be evicted…

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