Historical geography is an active, theoretically-informed and vibrant field of study within modern geography, with strong interdisciplinary connections with the humanities and the social sciences. The SAGE Handbook of Historical Geography provides an international and in-depth overview of the field with chapters that examine the history, present condition and future significance of historical geography in relation to recent developments and current research. The Handbook is in two volumes, divided across nine parts. Volume One includes commentaries on the history and geography of historical geography, and reviews how historical geographers have considered the appropriation, management and representation of landscape, the changing geographies of property, land, money and financial capital, and the demographic, medical and political analysis of the world's growing and mobile population. Volume Two shows how historical geographers have made significant contributions to geopolitical debates about the relationships between nation-states and empires, to environmental challenges posed by human interaction with the natural world, to studies of the cultural, intellectual and political implications of modern science and technology, and to investigations of communicative action, artefacts, performances and representations. The final part reviews the methodological and ethical challenges of historical geography as a publicly engaged research practice. Part 1: Histories and Geographies; Part 2: Land and Landscapes; Part 3: Property and Money; Part 4: Population and Mobility; Part 5: Territory and Geopolitics; Part 6: Environment and Nature; Part 7: Science and Technology; Part 8: Meaning and Communication; and Part 9: Studies in Practice.

State and Territory

State and territory
Elliott ChildTrevor Barnes

‘Territory is back … Territory's time has come.’ (Painter 2010, 1090)

Introduction

For two hours on the evening of 4 August 1964, a flotilla of US Navy destroyers crisscrossed an inky Tonkin Gulf, its commodore flashing a stream of urgent messages. On the USS Maddox, sonar-men seemingly heard numerous enemy torpedoes and, on the USS Turner Joy's radar, there were blips ostensibly resembling the evasive movements of hostile patrol boats. In Washington DC, harried analysts in the Department of Defense tracked the ships’ combat manoeuvres. After a lull, confusion reigned. A later review cast doubt on all preceding information, concluding that ‘freak weather effects on radar and overeager sonar-men may have accounted for many reports [of enemy activity]’. There ...

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