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Cover Strategy in the Contemporary World

17. Geopolitics and Grand Strategy  

Stefanie Ortmann and Nick Whittaker

This chapter discusses the concept of geopolitics and its role in formulating and implementing a grand strategy. It first provides an overview of the relationship between grand strategy and geography, before explaining how the meanings of grand strategy and geopolitics evolved in response to changing world historical contexts. It then considers the reasons why geopolitics and grand strategy are linked to the politics of great powers and why these concepts are currently making a comeback. In particular, it examines the revival of geopolitical thinking after the Second World War and how geopolitical reasoning informed containment as a grand strategy during the cold war. The chapter also takes a look at the pitfalls and problems associated with formulating a grand strategy, especially in today’s complex international environment. Finally, it argues that there is a need to rethink geopolitics with the ultimate goal of balancing ends and means.


Cover Contemporary Security Studies

13. Popular Culture and Security  

Galia Press-Barnathan

This chapter explores the roles that popular culture plays in shaping and understanding security-related processes. It explains the different ways in which popular culture is conceived by different IR scholars and consequently how it impacts politics, and security issues more specifically. The chapter then focuses on the role of pop culture in managing conflicts (how it shapes basic beliefs about conflicts and how it helps sustain enemy images), how pop culture is used in inter-state geo-political competition, as a source of soft power, and finally, what roles pop culture can play in supporting transitions to peace, and in normalizing various types of understandings of peace.