Date

12-2016

Department

Helms School of Government

Degree

Master of Arts (MA)

Chair

Stephen M Parke

Keywords

Constructivism, Geopolitics, International Relations, Liberalism, Middle East, Realism

Disciplines

European History | History | International Relations | Military History | Other History | Political History | Political Theory

Abstract

This thesis is not intended to be a dogmatic or pedantic endorsement of any one religion, ethic, or culture. To the contrary, it is the intent of the author to examine a number of competing ideas, philosophies, and belief systems in order to extrapolate their geopolitical implications and to pursue them to their logical (albeit sometimes inevitable) conclusions. Too often, any number of presuppositions at work within a given situation go overlooked and subsequently skew geopolitical analysis and resulting policy decisions. This thesis seeks to transcend mere opinion or speculation and achieve instead a framework of Constructivism for pragmatic comprehension and understanding. In short, this thesis seeks to defend the notion that ideas matter in geopolitics and that sound analysis must account for the ideas esteemed by both the entities being observed (e.g. states, peoples, etc.) and the analyst(s) themselves.