Geopolitics A: [ u © r à fiy à siy à s ì ya. – F: géopolitique. – G: geopolitik. – R: geopolitika. S: geopolítica. – C: diyuan zhengzhixue. The term ‘geopolitics’ was formalised by the Swedish constitutional lawyer Rudolf Kjellén (1864–1922) and systematically developed and raised to a doctrine of international relations by Karl Haushofer (1869–1946) during the period of Europe’s intensifying interstate rivalries after the turn of the century. It had the objective of emphasising the primary determination of the political by space. Since the 1970s, it is supposed to capture in its formally neutralised version ‘power struggles over territories for the purpose of political control over space’ ( Lacoste 1993). Cross-nationally, the concept entails three core elements: a bio-organic notion of the state, a social-Darwinist view of inter-state relations defined as a struggle for Lebensraum [living space], and the deduction of the political from spatio-natural determinants. 1. As set out in the Zeitschrift für Geopolitik [ Journal for Geopolitics ], Haushofer’s ‘speci- fically German’ theory of international politics combined (i) a backward-looking critique of the liberal, ‘mechanistic’conceptions of the state and society, counterposed to the völkisch ‘ideas of 1914’ and an organicist conception of the
Historical Materialism – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2006
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