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European Geopolitical Perceptions for East Asia between Two World Wars

  • Journal of Humanities
  • 2016, (61), pp.77-114
  • Publisher : Institute for Humanities
  • Research Area : Humanities > Other Humanities
  • Received : April 23, 2016
  • Accepted : May 4, 2016

jinil LEE 1

1성균관대학교 동아시아역사연구소

Accredited

ABSTRACT

Unlike the general prejudice, geopolitics is a phenomenon confined neither to Nazi Germany nor to Japanese militarism. In its beginning geopolitics was closely related with Friedrich Ratzel, a German geographer in the 19th century. He devides the earth with continental power and ocean power, and stressed the importance of geographical factors, that they have. Halford Mackinder, (1861-1947) and Alfred Mahan (1840-1914) took over the geographical theory of Ratzels. Paradoxically, after the Cold War ended, geopolitics faced a new renaissance than ever before. Ultimately, the Western geopolitics of the early 20th century focused on how to control the Soviet Russia across Europe and Asia. Haushofer published a book Kontinentalblock. Mitteleuropa-Eurasien-Japan (München, 1941) with the idea to tie the Eurasian continent between Germany and Japan in the year that Second World War begins. Geopolitics was used as an academic tool to explain the reality of political relations on the one hand and as an aggressive tools to lead this political action on the other hand. Nevertheless, geopolitics as a new discipline does not take into account the factors like economy, population, and culture in a country, which shows its scantiness as an analytical tools.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.

This paper was written with support from the National Research Foundation of Korea.