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The Rebirth of Geopolitics in Post-Communist Romania: Ideas, Role and Collective Imaginary

[journal article]

Cioculescu, Șerban Filip

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Abstract The paper examines the historical developments of the controversial scientific discipline of geopolitics in Romania and the aim of our contribution is exactly to clarify the status and role of the geopolitics as a possible branch of social sciences, the main schools of thought, authors, and topics. If the interwar tradition of Romanian geopolitics is generally well popularized in universities and research institutions, the contemporary autochthonous geopolitical discourse is largely ignored by our scientific reviews of sociology and social sciences. We put the basic question: why this geopolitics’ reemergence happened in the 90s? One can mention the historical intellectual tradition, the ontological anxiety produced by the new status of Romania as an independent state not covered by any great power’s security guaranty or by an alliance, the foreign policy identity crisis produced by the difficulty to decide if Romania was a Western, an Eastern or a Central European state, plus the sensitive domestic situation at the beginning of the 90s, the mass psychology focusing on external threats and conspiracy against Romania’s interests. A special emphasis is put on the foreign policy imaginary which is still heavily dominated by the materialist and deterministic vision on Romania’s role as an EU and NATO member. After collecting many of the available proofs, be they texts, debates, institutional activities, opinions, we can generally conclude that there has been a revival of geopolitics in Romania, which became obvious in the first half of the previous decade, immediately after the end of the Cold War.
Keywords Romania; post-communist society; foreign policy; geopolitics; historical development; discourse; scientific discipline; mass media; political identity
Classification International Relations, International Politics, Foreign Affairs, Development Policy; Sociology of Science, Sociology of Technology, Research on Science and Technology
Free Keywords intellectual tradition; ontological anxiety; mass psychology; imaginary
Document language English
Publication Year 2009
Page/Pages p. 119-151
Journal Studia Politica : Romanian Political Science Review, 9 (2009) 1
ISSN 1582-4551
Status Published Version; peer reviewed
Licence Creative Commons - Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works