Political Geography

Political Geography 320 Research Paper (Due on Blackboard by the end of the day November 30)For this paper, you should pick any independent state in the world. You should email your topic before the end of October. No more than one student may write on a single country. It would be wise to have an alternate country in case your first choice is taken. You may not choose the United States or the country in which you were born.  The paper must not be emailed. Late papers suffer a five points per day penalty after the due time.The paper should be double-spaced typed (12 point, Times-New Roman), have citations (footnotes, for example), and have a bibliography. The paper should be at least 12 pages long (not including bibliography, cover, maps, or pictures and should strictly adhere to this format listed below. Maps and other graphics should be included but do not count toward the page total. Papers must have cover pages and titles. Papers should be submitted into Blackboard’s Assignments.Format (Please follow this)Introduction: The introduction should explain how and when the state came into being, how the people formed (or had problems forming) an identity of their own, how the state got its name and the meaning of that name, how important the state is in its region and in the world, and how it is unique or memorable in the world now.Size and Shape: You should discuss the influence that the size and shape of the state has had on its history. Please tell shape classification for your state based on the types discussed in class. Physical geography of the state may have played an important role in its survival (United Kingdom in World War II). Has the state gained or lost territory? If so, explain how this was done.System of Governance: In this section, you should analyze and evaluate the state’s form of government and how (or if) it has changed as the country’s borders have changed. The following concepts should be used: unitary vs. federal (or regional); democratic vs. totalitarian; republic vs. monarchy.Capitals and Cores: Here you should discuss the reasons why the capital is located where it is. Has the capital been moved and if so, why was it moved? You should also discuss the core areas (s) of the state and whether the capital is now in one of these cores.Ethnicity and Language: In this part of the paper, discuss any ethnic or linguistic minorities the countries have and if that has caused or may soon cause any problems. How close is your country to being a true “nation-state”? Please address any secession, autonomy, or separatist movements and explain what they seek. Part of your objective is to assess the stability of the state and, therefore, you must address the concepts of centrifugal and centripetal forces here.Internal and External Conflicts: In this section, tell why your country has been in the news since the end of World War II. You should discuss and involvement in war and  any conflicts that have threatened your state’s existence or stability. Internal conflicts may include civil wars or terrorist campaigns within a country or toward its possessions. External conflicts would be those with other countries.Conclusion: Discuss the future for the country’s stability and viability. Will your state exist in its current form 50 years from now? And, if so, will its borders be the same? You must tell why or why not. You must also give your opinions about how the problems may be averted or if it would be better if the state disintegrated. This section should be at least two pages long and failure to do so will result in significant point deduction. Wikipedia may not be used as the main source (though feel free to use references from articles in it). You must have at least ten sources for your paper.

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