63 terms

AP Human Geography: Political Geography

STUDY
PLAY

Terms in this set (...)

Political Geography
A subdivision of human geography focused on the nature and implications of the evolving spatial organization of political governance and formal political practice on the Earth's surface. It is concerned with why political spaces emerge in the places that they do and with how the character of those spaces affects social, political, economic, and environmental understandings and practices.
Territory
Area of land controlled by a nation.
Sovereignty
A principle of international relations that holds that final authority over social, economic, and political matters should rest with the legitimate rulers of independent states
Nation
Legally, a term encompassing all the citizens of a state. Most definitions now tend to refer to a tightly knit group of people possessing bonds of language, ethnicity, religion, and other shared cultural attributes. Such homogeneity actually prevails within very few states.
Nation-state
Theoretically, a recognized member of the modern state system possessing formal sovereignty and occupied by a people who see themselves as a single, united nation. Most nations and states aspire to this form, but it is realized almost nowhere. Nonetheless, in common parlance, nation-state is used as a synonym for country or state.
Democracy
A government in which power is held by the people, who exercise power directly or through elected representatives.
Multinational State
state with more than one nation within its borders
Multistate Nation
nation that stretches across borders and across states
Stateless Nation
nation that does not have a state
Colonialism
rule by an autonomous power over a subordinate and alien people and place. Although often established and maintained through political structures, colonialism also creates unequal cultural and economic relations. Because of the magnitude and impact of the European colonial project of the last centuries, the term is generally understood to refer to that particular colonial endeavor.
Centripetal
An attitude that tends to unify people and enhance support for a state
Centrifrugal
things that cause disunity in the state (ex: political, religious, or economic conflict)
Unitary
A nation-state that has a centralized government and administration that exercises power equally over all parts of the state
Federal
a political-territorial system wherein a central government represents the various entities within a nation-state where they have common interest- defense, foreign affairs, and the like- yet allows these various entities to retain their own identities and to have their own laws, policies, and customs in certain spheres.
Devolution
The process whereby regions within a state demand and gain political strength and growing autonomy at the expense of the central government.
Reapportionment
Process by which representative districts are switched according to population shifts, so that each district encompasses approximately the same number of people
Majority-Minority Districts
In the context of determining representative districts, the process by which a majority of the population is from the minority.
Boundary
vertical plane between states that cuts through the rocks below, and the airspace above the surface
Heartland Theory
A geopolitical hypothesis, proposed by British geographer Halford Mackinder during the first two decades of the twentieth century, that any political power based in the heart of Eurasia could gain sufficient strength to eventually dominate the world. Mackinder further proposed that since Eastern Europe controlled access to the Eurasian interior, its ruler would command the vast "heartland" to the east
state
A country that has a sovereign government, defined borders, and is recognized by other states.
autonomous region
A formal region within a state that enjoys limited sovereignty; Similar to devolution.
supranational organization
An organization that operates across multiple states for political, economic, or military cooperation; States transfer some sovereignty to the union by joining.
UN
United Nations, a supranational organization.
League of Nations
Supranational organization established after World War I; Failed precursor to the United Nations.
EU
European Union, a supranational organization.
ASEAN
Association of Southeast Asian Nations, a supranational organization.
NAFTA
North American Free Trade Agreement, a supranational organization.
OPEC
Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, a supranational organization.
NATO
North Atlantic Treaty Organization, a supranational organization.
Kuwait
A small, oil-rich gulf state; In 1990 invaded by Iraq because of a dispute over shared oil reserves.
Brexit
A portmanteau of "British" + "exit"; 2016 referendum in the United Kingdom in which British voters voted to leave the EU because of perceived cost vs. benefit and loss of sovereignty.
Mesopotamia
A historical region situated within the Tigris-Euphrates river system, in modern days roughly corresponding to most of Iraq plus Kuwait, the eastern parts of Syria, Southeastern Turkey, and regions along the Turkish-Syrian and Iran-Iraq borders; Geographic location of the first states (city-states).
Fertile Crescent
Called "the cradle of civilization"; The arid geographic location that supported the first city-states.
Europe
Birthplace of the modern nation-state; i.e. England and France.
imperialism
A policy in which a strong nation seeks to dominate other countries politically, socially, and economically.
nationalism
Identifying with, becoming attached to, and pledging loyalty to one's nation.
colony
A territory that is legally tied to a sovereign state rather than completely independent.
electoral district
a formal region in which citizens vote for an elected representative.
redistricting
Changing of the borders of an electoral district to meet population changes, i.e. migration.
gerrymandering
Redistricting for the benefit of one political party or group.
geometric boundary
A political boundary defined and delimited as a straight line or an arc based on a grid system.
physical boundary
A.K.A. natural border; A political boundary defined and delimited by a prominent physical feature in the natural landscape, such as a river or the crest ridges of a mountain range.
Cyprus
An island state in the eastern Mediterranean Sea that is split between Greek and Turkish nations.
landlocked state
A state without access to ocean resources.
compact
State shape that is most efficient.
elongated
State shape that can be challenging for communication because of its long form.
prorupted
State shape that has a protrusion in order to give the state access to resources.
perforated
State shape that completely surrounds another state.
fragmented
State shape that has separations either by ocean (islands) or an intervening state.
enclave
A state that is surrounded by another state or states.
Catalonia and Basque
Separatist nations within Spain.
exclave
When a part of a state's territory is geographically separated by another country.
International waters
places were no government has sovereignty over the ocean
autocratic state
concentration of power in the hands of an individual or small group
superimposed boundary
forcibly created by an outside force, like a treaty or invader; it may not reflect cultural or physical landscape
antecedent boundary
created before an area is known or populated; usually based on a physical boundary
subsequent boundary
created after recognized settlement; meant to separate existing cultural groups and may signify an attempt to align the boundaries that exist between nations
Rimland Theory
created by Nicholas Spykman who stated that Eurasia's rimland, the coastal areas, is the key to controlling the World Island.
defined boundary
written, legal description of a boundary
demarcated boundary
actual placing of a political boundary on the physical landscape by means of fences, barriers, signs, etc.
Isogloss
A boundary that separates regions in which different language usages predominate.
Autocracy
A country that is run according to the interests of the ruler rather than the people
Anocracy
A country that is not fully democratic or fully autocratic, but rather displays a mix of the two types.

Flickr Creative Commons Images

Some images used in this set are licensed under the Creative Commons through Flickr.com.
Click to see the original works with their full license.