Geopolitics

General Information
Lecture and workshop (45 min break)
Room: 
203
ECTS: 
5
Number of Hours: 
60
Wednesday 11:30 - 15:15
Preliminary requirements: 

The course is based on all previous courses realized during first 2 years of studies. Its key aim is to allow a student to have holistic understanding of complex interactions taking place in geo-space, where politics is dominating, but not exclusive factor. Therefore, the following courses are necessary to complete to have sufficient preparation to the course: Introduction to Global Studies, History of Globalization, Contemporary International Relations, Religions in contemporary world, International cultural relations, Political and Economic Geography, Global Political Networks.

Having completed the course student will have possessed the knowledge of a variety of ideas and concepts that have been shaping the political discourse about international relations, with strong (but not exclusive) focus on geopolitics – understood as a concept, theory, doctrine, science and ideology. In addition to that they will understand the following: geo-economics, geo-history, geo-culture. The knowledge on geopolitics will be complemented with the ability to analyze IR from geopolitical perspective, or through “geopolitical lens”, with some predictive capability. Key competencies to gain would be: the ability to understand and explain the current and prospective events of International Relations leveraging knowledge of geopolitics and its analytical skills.  

Course Description: 

Lecture:

1. Introduction to the course: key definitions and relations with other/similar topics (geo-economy, geo-strategy, political geography)

2. Historical background of geopolitics 

3. History of geopolitical thought – until 1989

4. Current trends and ideas in geopolitical thinking (e.g. Astropolitics)

5. Geopolitical schools of thought (Anglo-Saxon, German, French, Russian, Polish, Italian, Spanish/LatAm, Chinese)

6. Critical geopolitics perspective

7. Continental vs. sea/naval geopolitics

8. Geo-economy and new way of looking at IR

Tutorial:

1. Introduction to geopolitical analysis

2. Sources of data for geopolitical analysis

3. The notion of geopolitical risk and its assessment

4. Forecasting in geopolitics

5. Presenting geopolitical analysis

Aims of the course: 

A student has basic knowledge about a state as an actor on IR, inter-state and international relations, including global political and economic problems.

She/he distinguishes key interdependencies and relations between participants of IR. 

She/he characterizes facts, underlying factors and mechanisms of processes behind IR historical evolution. 

She/he describes most important integration and disintegration processes in Europe and in the world. 

She/he possesses basic knowledge about the theory of IR.

She/he knows foundations and mechanisms of international security systems (the EU, NATO, OSCE, UN, regional systems).

She/he explains the influence of geographic conditions on relations between IR participants in concrete, selected cases.

She/he can rightfully interpret basic cultural, political, legal and economic events taking place in contemporary IR.

She/he can objectively refer to current discourse about historical or contemporary processes basing on facts and methods of scientific explanation. 

She/he can analyze the relations between actors of IR and in that process she/he can make a synthesis of various categories of pre-conditions (political, economic, social, demographic, cultural, military and information) 

She/he can elaborate on important political and economic aspects of contemporary world. 

She/he can assess the political behavior using science, adopting realistic and critical perspective. 

Teaching methods: 

During the course a variety of teaching methods will be used, starting from a lecture (using multimedia), through tutorials with data and text analysis, discussion, case study analysis and group work. In addition to that, students will be asked to prepare individual essay (about 2500 words) and present to the group a review of a book devoted to the course subject. 

Evaluation & Completion: 

Students will have to take an oral exam at the end of the course (based on 100 questions to be known at least 1 month before the exam date) – 2 questions per person, grade is based on average of the 2 answers (rated on 0-5 scale). To be allowed to take the exam they will have to receive passing mark from tutorials, based on (a) course participation, (b) discussion & group work participation (each weighting 25% of the total mark); (c) individual work (review of a book and an essay) – weighing 50% of the mark. Failure to deliver an essay and/or book review (or case of plagiarism) and tutorial participation lower than 75% eliminates from the course completion (except of force majeure). 

Basic Literature: 

Klaus Dodds, Global Geopolitics: A Critical Introduction, Pearson Prentice-Hall, Harlow, England, New York, 2005, 254pp. ISBN: 0-273-68609-7 

G. Ó Tuathail, S. Dalby and P. Routledge, A Geopolitics Reader. Second edition. Routledge, 2006

G. Ó Tuathail, Critical Geopolitics: The Politics of Writing Global Space. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press (Volume 6 in the Borderlines series) and London: Routledge, 1996

Colin Flint, Introduction to Geopolitics, 2006, ISBN-13: 978-0415667739

Saul Bernard Cohen,Geopolitics: The Geography of International Relations, Second Edition, ISBN-13: 978-0742556768

Tim Cresswell, Geographic Thought. A Critical Introduction. Wiley-Blackwell, 2013. 

Additional Literature: 

S. Dalby and G. Ó Tuathail, eds., Rethinking Geopolitics. Routledge, 1998

J. Agnew, K. Mitchell and G. Toal, eds., A Companion to Political Geography. Blackwell, 2004

Colin Flint, S Kirsch, Reconstructing Conflict: Integrating War and Post-war Geographies, 2011 

Saul Bernard Cohen, Geopolitics of the World System, Rowman & Littlefield, 2003

George Friedmann, The Next 100 Years. Doubleday, 2009, ISBN 0-385-51705-X

Sami Moisio, Geopolitics of the Knowledge-Based Economy. Routledge, 2018

Academic journals (selection): 

Geopolitics, Political Geography, Herodote, Foreign Affairs, Global Politics, International Affairs