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Geographic Mental Maps and Foreign Policy Change

Book Description

In recent years geographic mental maps have made a comeback into the spotlight of scholarly inquiry in the area of International Relations (IR), particularly Foreign Policy Analysis (FPA).

The book is framed within the mental map research agenda. It seeks to contribute and expand the theoretical and empirical development and application of geographic mental maps as an analytical concept for international politics. More precisely, it presents a theoretical framework for understanding how mental maps are employed in foreign policy decision-making and highlights the mechanisms involved in their transformation.

The theoretical framework presented in this book employs the latest conceptual and theoretical insight from numerous other scientific fields such as social psychology and organizational theory.

In order to test the theoretical propositions outlined in the initial chapters, the book assesses how the Carter Administration’s changing mental maps impacted its Middle East policy. In other words, the book applies geographic mental maps as an analytical tool to explain the development of the Carter Doctrine.

The book is particularly targeted at academics, students, and professionals involved in the fields of Human Geography, IR, Political Geography, and FPA. The book will also be of interest to individuals interested in Political Science more generally. While the book has is academic in nature, its qualitative and holistic approach is accessible to all readers interested in geography and international politics.

Luis da Vinha, PhD, is Assistant Professor of Geography & Political Science at Valley City State University.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright
  4. 1 Introduction: The Puzzles of the Carter Doctrine
    1. 1.1 The General Argument
    2. 1.2 Developing the Argument
    3. 1.3 Mapping of the Argument
  5. Part 1: Mapping the Carter Doctrine: Traditional approaches
    1. 2 Explaining Why Foreign Policy Changed During the Carter Presidency
    2. 3 Explaining How Foreign Policy Changed During the Carter Presidency
      1. 3.1 Punctuated Equilibrium
      2. 3.2 Planned Change
    3. 4 Rethinking the Concept of Foreign Policy Change
  6. Part 2: Geographic mental maps and foreign policy change
    1. 5 Geographic Mental Maps and Foreign Policy Decision-making
      1. 5.1 Defining Geographic Mental Maps
      2. 5.2 Placing Geography in the Mental Map Concept
      3. 5.3 From a Cognitive Psychological to a Social Psychological Approach to Geographic Mental Maps in FPA
    2. 6 Social Cognition and Information Processing
      1. 6.1 The Convergence Process: From Individual Mental Maps to Shared Mental Maps
    3. 7 The Mechanisms of Change: Communicative Interaction
  7. Part 3: Re-mapping the Carter Doctrine: The Carter administration’s geographic mental maps
    1. 8 Foreign Policy Decision-Making in the Carter Administration
      1. 8.1 The Decision-Making Structure in the Carter Administration
      2. 8.2 The Decision-Making Process and Dynamics
    2. 9 Maps of Hope and Peace
      1. 9.1 In Search of a Comprehensive Peace
    3. 10 Beyond Wishful Thinking
    4. 11 Hic Sunt Dracones: Dangers on the Edge of the Map
    5. 12 Iran and the Arc of Crisis
    6. 13 Adjusting to a Changing Middle East
      1. 13.1 Assuring the Possible Peace
      2. 13.2 Probing the New Regime in Iran and Reevaluating US Strategy in the Middle East
    7. 14 Maps of Fear and War
      1. 14.1 The Iranian Hostage Crisis
      2. 14.2 Soviet Involvement in Afghanistan and the Consolidation of the Carter Doctrine
      3. 14.3 Securing the Release of the Hostages
    8. 15 Conclusion
      1. 15.1 Issues of Contention and Debate
  8. Bibliography
  9. Index