Human Geography

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By Klaus J. Dodds

Dodds explores examples of yank geopolitical theorizing and hyperlinks those discussions to the iconic uncertainties of the post-September eleventh period. He additionally investigates geopolitics and its courting to globalization in addition to many of the key matters shaping the worldwide geopolitical conditions.

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Conclusions 23 Conclusions The United States, as the world’s largest military superpower, does face some extraordinary representational challenges. How does it reinterpret global political space in the absence of the Cold War adversary the Soviet Union? How does it respond to the ongoing yet ‘fluid threat’ posed by the Al-Qaeda terror network? And when is intervention simply either an act of unwelcome imperialism or illustrative of parochial self-interest? Geopolitical writers, amongst others, have been anxious to provide answers to these kinds of question and as such have also sought to construct new imaginative geographies of global politics with associated implications for military intervention.

2 Theories of world politics: key themes Realism Liberalism Critical geopolitics • • • • • National sovereignty • States and non-state organizations • Limited international cooperation • • • • National sovereignty States Military power Anarchical world Interdependence Globalization Networks and nodal points Representations of global space Traditional and critical geopolitics 31 nexus in discourse. As O Tuathail and Agnew noted, ‘Our foundational premise is the contention that geography is a social and historical discourse which is always intimately bound up with questions of politics and ideology .

Like other developments within the social sciences and humanities, critical approaches to world politics tend to share the postmodern scepticism that the world can be rationally perceived and interpreted through particular techniques. The starting point for critical geopolitics is to argue that conventional perspectives on geopolitics and international politics ignore the assumptions that underpin those positions in the first place. Critical thinking poses questions such as how current situations come to exist or how power works to sustain particular contexts.

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