The Changing World: Studies in Political Geography

The Changing World: Studies in Political Geography

The Changing World: Studies in Political Geography

The Changing World: Studies in Political Geography

Excerpt

A man needs rub up his geography in these days": so wrote The Times newspaper on March 10, 1848. To-day, no less than in 1848 or in 1921, when the first edition of Isaiah Bowman The New World appeared, the time is appropriate for an appraisal of the geography of national and international affairs, subject as these are to continual change. Change, too, has always been the concern of students of geography, for the parts of the earth are always being revalued as ideas and technologies change. Certainly at no time has the tempo of change in the international scene--some of it revolutionary in kind--been greater than during the decade which followed the second world war: in more senses than one the world is on the move. Ironically enough, its component parts are now more closely associated than ever, despite the political ideologies which divide it. Scientific and technological advances could now, more than ever before, lead to improved standards of living, and we possess to-day a more accurate inventory of the "estate of man" than was ever available to our ancestors. No less important in our politically divided world are the invigorating new mental climates which find expression in the desires for further political, social, and economic changes. The nature and direction of these changes call for objective analysis, such as is attempted in the studies which are gathered together in this book.

A survey of these widespread developments, together with analyses of the geographical and historical conditions which lie behind them, is best achieved through an editorial plan executed by a team of contributors, each of whom has made special studies in his particular field. We are deeply indebted to our many collaborators, drawn as they are from various parts of the Anglo-American world. In particular, we are grateful to them for their ready acceptance of the limitations which the character and scope of this book necessarily impose. The least we could do was to give them freedom of expression in all but length: a balanced discussion of the world's major problem areas and problems calls for a judicious allocation of the limited space.

The fact that this work is the co-operative effort of no fewer than . . .

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