Borders: A Very Short Introduction

ISBN : 9780199731503

Alexander C. Diener; Joshua Hagen
152 Pages
117 x 174 mm
Pub date
Sep 2012
Very Short Introductions


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  • Written to serve as a gateway for readers new to border studies
  • Offers both a historical and contemporary treatment of borders
  • Provides readers with a basic understanding of the importance of borders to debates about the environment, politics, immigration, and economics
  • Covers transnational communities, security threats from terrorist groups, migration regulation, rights of indigenous peoples, the legal status of the sea and outer space), environmental sustainability, and the emergence of neo-liberal economics, amongst other topics

Compelling and accessible, this Very Short Introduction challenges the perception of borders as passive lines on a map, revealing them instead to be integral forces in the economic, social, political, and environmental processes that shape our lives. Highlighting the historical development and continued relevance of borders, Alexander C. Diener and Joshua Hagen offer a powerful counterpoint to the idea of an imminent borderless world, underscoring the impact borders have on a range of issues, such as economic development, inter- and intra-state conflict, global terrorism, migration, nationalism, international law, environmental sustainability, and natural resource management. Diener and Hagen demonstrate how and why borders have been, are currently, and will undoubtedly remain hot topics across the social sciences and in the global headlines for years to come. 
"This book offers a rich introduction for research into the amorphous nature of human social-spatial organization." - Gregory Lee Cuellar, Horizons in Biblical Theology


Chapter 1: A Very Bordered World
Chapter 2: Borders and Territory in the Ancient World
Chapter 3: The Modern State System
Chapter 4: The Practice of Bordering
Chapter 5: Border Crossers and Border Crossings
Chapter 6: Cross-border Institutions and Systems
Chapter 7: A Very Bordered Future
Further Reading

About the author: 

Alexander C. Diener is an Assistant Professor of Geography at the University of Kansas.
Joshua Hagen is Professor of Geography at Marshall University.

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