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Key Issue #2 – Where are boundaries drawn between states? How does shape effect a state?. A state is separated from its neighbors by a boundary , an invisible line marking the extent of a state’s territory.

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A state is separated from its neighbors by a boundary, an invisible line marking the extent of a state’s territory.

    • Boundaries result from a combination of natural physical features (rivers, deserts, or mountains) and cultural features (language or religion).
    • Boundaries completely surround an individual state to mark the outer limits of its territorial control and to give it a distinctive shape.
shapes of states
SHAPES OF STATES
  • The shape of a state controls the length of its boundaries with other states.
    • It is part of its unique identity (think Italy).
    • Beyond its value as a centripetal force, the shape of a state can influence the ease or difficulty of internal administration and can affect unity.
  • Each shape displays distinctive characteristics and problems…
compact states
Compact States

Group #1: Benefits? Group #2: Downfalls? Group #3: Examples?

compact states1
Compact States
  • BENEFITS
  • In a compact state, the distance from the center to any boundary does not vary significantly.
    • Ease of communication
    • Easy to defend
  • DOWNFALLS
  • To be identified as a compact state means to be fairly small in size
    • May be scarce in natural resources (not a catch all!)
    • May lack population needed for labor, protection

EXAMPLES

Burundi, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Ecuador, Uruguay

slide6

Kenya

Burundi

Compact States

prorupted states
Prorupted States

Group #1: Examples? Group #2: Benefits? Group #3: Downfalls?

prorupted states1
Prorupted States

BENEFITS

a proruption can provide access to a resource, such as water.

proruptions can separate two states that would otherwise border each other.

DOWNFALLS

(1) May be difficult to govern regions of proruptions

(2) May be difficult to protect prorupted region

EXAMPLES

Thailand, Namibia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Afghanistan, Myanmar

elongated states
Elongated States

Group #1: Downfalls? Group #2: Examples? Group #3: Benefits?

elongated states1
Elongated States

BENEFITS

Less land to protect?

May have access to more resources from different regions

  • DOWNFALLS
  • poor internal communication?
  • Difficult to protect
  • A region located at an extreme end of the elongation might be isolated from the capital, which is usually situated at the center.

EXAMPLES

Chile, Norway, Italy, Gambia, Vietnam, Laos

fragmented states
Fragmented States

Group #1: Benefits? Group #2: Downfalls? Group #3: Examples?

fragmented states1
Fragmented States

BENEFITS

Local ethnicities/nationalities can maintain a large degree of independence

DOWNFALLS

Difficult to protect

Difficult to mandate national level laws/ordinances

Political conflict if separated by another state

Communication hindered

Transportation of goods difficult

EXAMPLES

Indonesia, Japan, the Philippines, the Bahamas, India, Panama

perforated states
Perforated States

Group #1: Examples? Group #2: Benefits? Group #3: Downfalls?

perforated states1
Perforated States

BENEFITS

??????

DOWNFALLS

Unrest in the state creating the perforation can carry into the perforated state

Negative for the state inside because they must depend on the surrounding state for imports/exports

EXAMPLES

South Africa, Vatican City

landlocked states
Landlocked States
  • A landlocked state lacks a direct outlet to the sea because it is completely surrounded by several other countries.
    • Landlocked states are most common in Africa (14).
    • Direct access to the ocean is critical because it facilitates international trade. To send and receive goods by the sea, a landlocked state must arrange to use another country’s seaport.
  • Depending on the relationship with other countries, this may not always be possible.
types of boundaries
TYPES OF BOUNDARIES
  • Historically, frontiers rather than boundaries separated states. A frontier is a zone where no state exercises complete political control.
    • A frontier is tangible, whereas a border is invisible.
    • A frontier provides a buffer between states, whereas a border brings neighbors into direct contact, increasing the potential for violence.
  • Almost universally, frontiers have been replaced by borders.
  • The only places remaining with frontiers are Antarctica and the Arabian Peninsula.
physical boundaries
Physical Boundaries
  • Physical features make suitable boundaries because they can be seen. There are 3 types of physical boundaries:
    • Mountain Boundaries– Are only effective if they’re difficult to cross. They sometimes isolate nationalities on either side of the mountains.
    • Desert Boundaries– A boundary drawn in a desert can also effectively divide two states. Like mountains, deserts are hard to cross and are sparsely inhabited.
    • Water boundaries– Rivers, lakes, and oceans are the physical features most commonly used as physical boundaries. Water boundaries are visible on a map and are relatively unchanging. They also offer good protection.
cultural boundaries
Cultural Boundaries
  • The boundaries between some states coincide with differences in ethnicity or can they be straight lines.
    • Geometric Boundaries– These boundaries are usually fixed according to a line of latitude. The US and Canada share a 1,300 mile border along 49º North latitude. This treaty was established in 1846 between the US and Britain.
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141 W Longitude

49th Parallel

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Religious Boundaries– Religious differences often coincide with boundaries between states, but in only a few cases has the religion been used to set the actual border. The best example is when Britain partitioned India due to the predominantly Muslim areas in the west (present day Pakistan).

slide30

Language Boundaries– Language has been an important characteristic for drawing boundaries, especially in Europe. France, England, Spain, Portugal, Germany, and Italy all came together because of language.

language barriers continued
Language Barriers continued…
  • After WWI, the victors sat down to redraw the map of Europe. One of the most important criterions used to create new states in Europe was language.
    • The conference was particularly troubled by Eastern and Southern Europe, areas that were plagued by political instability.
    • Most of the areas created stood for several decades. Later, despite speaking similar languages, Czechs and Slovaks found they couldn’t live together, as did the Croats, Macedonians, Serbs, and Slovenes. The breakup of these countries created a huge change in Eastern Europe.
the geography of representation
The Geography of Representation
  • Electoral geography
  • Census, Reapportionment, Redistricting
    • Gerrymandering (practice of drawing boundaries of legislative districts so as to unfairly favor one political party over another).
      • GOAL: To earn the most seats in the U.S. House of Representatives from your state
forms of gerrymandering
Forms of Gerrymandering
  • Wasted Vote- Spread opposition supporters across many districts but in the minority (also called “cracking” districts)
  • Excess Vote- Concentrate opposition supporters into a few districts (also called “packing” districts)
    • Stacked Vote- Links distant areas of like minded voters through oddly shaped boundaries

Gerrymandering in Pennsylvania?

slide37

Central

Government

(Power

exists here)

Local/State

Government

(Limited

Power)

Local/State

Government

(Limited

Power)

Local/State

Government

(Limited

Power)

Unitary System

  • All key powers to the central or national government (it is not the only level of government)
    • That government creates other local, state, or provincial governments and gives them limited sovereignty
    • Examples?
      • Chile, China, Cuba, Syria

Authoritarian Dictatorships

Unitary systems work best in these forms of government…

Oligarchies Absolute Monarchies

Theocracies

slide38

Federal System

Federal (Central

Government)

Specified Powers

State/Local

Government

Specified Powers

State/Local

Government

Specified Powers

State/Local

Government

Specified Powers

  • Divides the powers of government between the national government and the state or provincial governments
  • Each level of government has sovereignty in some areas
  • Examples?
    • United States, Brazil, India, South Africa

Indirect Democracies

Constitutional Monarchies

Federal Systems work best in these forms of government…