Secure the Volume – Political Geography paper available

My paper “Secure the Volume: Vertical Geopolitics and the Depth of Power” has now been published by Political Geography in their ‘articles in press’ section [open access here]. They’ve not yet posted the responses by Peter Adey and Gavin Bridge but my reply “Bodies, Books, Beneath” is also available. The journal requires a subscription, but if you are having difficulties, please contact me.


We all-too-often think of the spaces of geography as areas, not volumes. Territories are bordered, divided and demarcated, but not understood in terms of height and depth. ‘Secure the area’ is a common expression for the military and police, but what happens if another dimension is taken into account and we think what it means to ‘secure the volume’? This article draws on the emergent literature on vertical geopolitics and Peter Sloterdijk’s work on spheres, but also looks at what happens below the surface, with a particular focus on tunnels. Using Paul Virilio’s work, and some examples from the West Bank and Israel’s border with Lebanon, it demonstrates how we need to think volume—think about volume, through volume, with volume—rather than simply the vertical to make sense of the complexities of territory today.


► Argues that we need to think of territories as volumes rather than areas; three not two dimensions. ► Links work on vertical geopolitics to literature on urban exploration. ► Broadens the sense of geopolitics to think about land and earth. ► Theorises the notion of the volumetric as combining volume and metrics. ► Provides a discussion of sites in Israel/Palestine, and Paul Virilio’s early work on architecture.

  • Volume;
  • Security;
  • Verticality;
  • Volumetric;
  • Power;
  • Geopolitics
This entry was posted in My Publications, Paul Virilio, Peter Sloterdijk, Politics, Territory. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Secure the Volume – Political Geography paper available

  1. Jeremy says:

    Reblogged this on Open Geography and commented:
    Stuart’s paper “Secure the Volume” which he gave here at UK last spring, has now been published in Political Geography.

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