GEOG 128
Geography of International Affairs



Required Reading Reminder

Please begin by reading Chapter 5 of Flint, C. (2016). Introduction to geopolitics (3rd ed.). London: Routledge.

Boundary: the dividing line between political entities/the “line in the sand”.

Border: refers to that region contiguous with the boundary, a region within which society and the landscape are altered by the presence of the boundary.

Borderlands: the two borders either side of a boundary can be viewed as one borderland.

Frontiers: the process of territorial expansion in what is deemed (usually falsely) as “empty” areas, e.g., the American Frontier.


Watch Boundaries and Borderlands (by Annenberg Learner) for an exploration of the US and Mexico boundary and borders (28 minutes).

As you watch the film, think about the terms listed above (boundary, border, borderland, and frontier). While the definitions give us abstract understandings of the terms. How does the case study of Ciudad Juarez (Mexico) and El Paso, TX (USA) help us better understand the terms and their implications for the people who live on either side of a boundary? Using the case study of the US-Mexico boundary and border highlighted in the film, think of examples for each of the aforementioned terms.