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(p. 299) 17. Geopolitics and Grand Strategy 

(p. 299) 17. Geopolitics and Grand Strategy
(p. 299) 17. Geopolitics and Grand Strategy

Stefanie Ortmann

and Nick Whittaker

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date: 08 July 2020

This chapter examines the concept of geopolitics and its role in grand strategy. It first considers how the concepts of grand strategy and geopolitics evolved in response to changing world historical contexts before discussing why they came to be associated with the politics of Great Powers. It shows that the concept of grand strategy was initially developed in the context of the Second World War and that both the Soviet Union and the United States acted geopolitically during the cold war. It also looks at containment, a grand strategy informed by geopolitical reasoning but driven by ideological concerns rather than resource competition. The chapter proceeds by describing the pitfalls and problems associated with formulating a grand strategy and explains why geopolitics is as much about interpretation as it is about geography.

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