A Political Geography of Latin America (1997) by Jonathan R. Barton

By Jonathan R. Barton

The geographical regions and peoples of South and vital the US, Cuba, Haiti and the Dominican Republic, that jointly shape the political countryside of Latin the United States, surround quite a lot of societies, politics and economies. this article exposes the diversities among areas, areas and nations, participants and societies, supplying a useful perception into the subjects of political and financial improvement, and offers a consultant to realizing energy and area kinfolk. From the Antarctic to the tropical jungles, the coastal groups to the highland villages, the mega-cities to remoted rural lifestyles, the political geographies of lives, localities, towns and rurality are too subtle to be subjected to generalizations. Adopting a severe human geography standpoint, Jonathon Barton offers an figuring out of similarities, distinction and complex human geographies.

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The ‘organic’ state theory was rooted in the field of environmental determinism since it sought to explain society with relation to its local environment and territorial basis. The geostrategists focused on the international system, and foreign relations within that system 16 POWER TO THE PEOPLE? deriving from the defensive and offensive organisation of nation-states with respect to strategic objectives. One striking similarity of the two schools, which ran alongside one another from the late nineteenth century to the end of the Second World War, when geostrategy emerged the stronger, was their nation-state centricity and their preoccupation with armed conflicts.

These maps reflect the ethnocentricity that served to legitimate the brutal acts carried out during the conquest and later colonial period. Eurocentrism and the ideologies of the Renaissance were at the heart of the philosophy behind ‘discovery’ and the ‘civilising mission’. In the late fifteenth century a Jesuit priest, Father Ricci, altered the European cartographic map of the world to place the Pacific at its centre. This resulted from a meeting with Chinese mandarins at his mission in Shaoking who were surprised at the position of China on the European-based map and the fact that the world was represented as a sphere (Mignolo, 1994).

The presumed remedy was the promotion of industrialisation to replace imported manufactures. The policies that resulted from this idea were collectively termed import substitution industrialisation (ISI) (see Baer, 1975). While the structuralists of CEPAL attempted to work within the boundaries of the capitalist system, embarking on reforms of the system to favour Latin American economic growth patterns by improving terms of trade and gross domestic product (GDP), the dependency theorists, dependentistas, were more radical in their outlook.

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