State formation and the geography of palestinian self-determination

Ghazi Falah, David Newman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


The implementation of the first stages of the peace agreement between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) has generated a dynamics with the potential for the creation of an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, a 'state in formation'. At the present writing (September 1995), it would appear to be well on its way to achieving limited sovereignty and the threshold to eventual full independence. Concepts of self-determination are important in understanding the dynamics of Palestinian state evolution. Processes of internal, external and self-empowerment explain the way in which a Palestinian 'field' has evolved over time. The diffusion of limited autonomy from the core to the periphery and the gradual delimitation of a boundary are shown to influence the crystallization of state territory. Certain spaces are "avoided" in an attempt to exclude them from the negotiating agenda. The formation of a separate Palestinian state will likely result in a new set of territorial and geo-ethnic problems, not least the issue of the status, and possible secessionist aspirations, of the Arab-Palestinian residents of Israel.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)60-72
Number of pages13
JournalTijdschrift Voor Economische en Sociale Geografie
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1996


  • Core territories
  • Israel
  • Palestinian self-determination
  • Political geography
  • State formation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Economics and Econometrics


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