The state, political geography, and geography

R. J. Johnston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


The focus of this chapter is a society-centred view of the state; it identifies the state as necessary to the operations of society and develops an understanding of state operations accordingly. Other approaches - state-centred rather than society-centred - are possible. A full analysis of the state and political geography requires equal treatment of the state-centred and society-centred approaches. Here, the latter gets virtually all of the attention, in a brief overview that focuses on why we have states in modern societies and why those states are necessarily territorial institutions. The first section considers the need for the state in conflict-ridden capitalist societies and the territorial requirements of the roles that it must play. After this, attention turns to the autonomy of the state, and then to the concept of the state apparatus and to the running of the state. A final brief section deals with the pattern of states and geopolitics. -from Author

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)292-309
Number of pages18
JournalAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers (Paper)
Publication statusPublished - 1989


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