In this richly illustrated presentation, we discuss the theory for Geographic Causation in Universal History proposed by Sir Halford Mackinder in his paper – The Geographic Pivot of History delivered as a lecture in 1904. Art enthusiasts will be interested in seeing how the selection of classic paintings used in the lecture synchronise with the themes in the presentation.
The theoretical propositions in the paper regarding how natural geography controls the flow of history of civilisations – with nature acting as a stage for man to act upon – was the most relevant contribution of Halford Mackinder towards developing a philosophic synthesis between geography, history and statesmanship, leading to the development of modern geopolitics. In this part we see how he proposes the beginning of a new era in the international system from the 1900s, predicts (in a way) the break out of the First World War, and builds a unified model based on Geo-history for understanding the emergence and evolution of European civilisation.
The scope of the paper is vast. And discussions will continue in two further lectures.