An abstract by Stuart Elden on ‘Earth’.

Progressive Geographies

Here’s my abstract for CityState: A Lexical Workshop later this year in Tel Aviv:


Geopolitics has, today, become effectively a synonym for global politics. Armchair strategists still come up with grand plans for understanding and changing the world; critical geopolitics scholars offer broad analyses of such strategies and the interlinked relations of capital, state power, nationalism and territory. But could geopolitics be rethought in a way that was closer to the etymological roots of the word, yet for progressive political purpose?

Geopolitics literally means politics of the ‘geo’, the earth, land, planet or world. Each of those terms would need to be thought carefully, both in relation to and differentiation from each other, and from a notion of the global. Here the focus is on the question of the earth. A geopolitics that was a politics of the earth, rather than of the globe, might  easily collapse into reactionary politics. Friedrich Ratzel’s…

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