Between realism and the ‘New Right’: geopolitics in Germany in the 1990s

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Abstract:

This essay explores the connections between geopolitics and political conservatism. The introductory argument is that geopolitics historically has been appealing and useful for two very different expressions of conservatism: one which aims to preserve the political geography of the existing international status quo and one which seeks to transcend it and establish a new international order. Through an examination of the ‘renaissance’ of a conservative geopolitics in Germany, the essay considers how this particular pattern is reproduced in the present day. Although this conservative geopolitics operates for the most part at the fringes of political discourses in Germany, it does have a more specific significance for nationalist-conservative perspectives and those of the ‘New Right’, both in Germany and elsewhere.

Keywords: Germany; Lebensraum; conservatism; geopolitics; political geography; realism

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1475-5661.00097

Publication date: September 1, 2003

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