Since the end of the Cold War, geographical space has played a vital role in the social and political transformations of the Baltic region and Eastern Europe. As always, space provides a passive background arena upon which political discourses are articulated and social identities are negotiated. At the same time, however, space acts as an active and dynamic factor in its own right. It is at the center of a range of critical political processes, such as redrawing state boundaries, disputes over territories, shifting international political alliances, the resurgence of neo-imperialism, fragmentation within the EU, and the securitization of energy resources. The study of geopolitics, long stigmatized because of its historical association with the Nazi regime, has become normalized and indeed is enjoying a remarkable renaissance.
All of these political developments in turn affect the construction and articulation of social and national identities, and in this perceptual process geographical space once again emerges as a vital element. Indeed, Eastern Europe provides a veritable laboratory for the re-imagining of what might be called “spaces of identity”. Geographical constructions or re-constructions such as Eurasia, Russkii Mir, Mitteleuropa, the Polish Intermarium, the Western Balkans, and many others are deployed for instrumental political purposes but can also exert a powerful appeal on the public imagination. This is especially true when they are associated with civilizational ideas based on religion, cultural history, or other factors. This research theme will consider the broad spectrum of topics relating to these issues. Both contemporary and historical questions will be considered.