Citizenship, identity and location: The changing discourse of Israeli geopolitics

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States do not occupy a single place within an unchanging geopolitical structure. The geopolitical imagination of the political elites, the residents and citizens, and other groups whose fate is tied up with that of the state, reflect alternative locations within the regional and global setting. The collective imagination of the state, to the extent that it represents the aggregate collective identity of its diverse components, is itself a composition of the individual imaginations of the residents and citizens of that state. The degree to which an individual identifies with the state ethos, sees him/herself as an equal citizen, as a member of the majority or minority groups and/or as a member of the global village, will determine the way in which he/she perceives the location of the state as part of the changing global community (Soysal 1996; Yuval-Davis 1997). The more internally homogeneous is the composition of a state’s population and its alternative identities, the less diverse the geopolitical imaginations. The more heterogeneous a population, the more diverse the varied forms of local, national and regional identities and, hence, the positioning within the global system. This becomes all the more diverse as boundaries-both social and spatial-are opened up, as information is disseminated through cyberspace and satellites, as travel restrictions are eased, as diaspora populations become closely linked to ‘homeland’ populations, and as increasing numbers of migrant workers arrive to take their place within the socio-economic system (Brunn, Jones and Purcell 1994; Morley and Robins 1995; Soysal 1996).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGeopolitical traditions
Subtitle of host publicationCritical Histories of a Century of Geopolitical Thought
EditorsK. Dodds, D. Atkinson
Number of pages30
ISBN (Electronic)0-203-75735-1, 0-203-44911-8
ISBN (Print)0-415-17248-9, 0-415-17249-7
StatePublished - 2002


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