Ahponen & Jukarainen - Tearing Down the Curtain, Opening the Gates

Nimeke: Tearing Down the Curtain, Opening the Gates: Northern Boundaries in Change

Toimittanut: Pirkkoliisa Ahponen & Pirjo Jukarainen

ISBN: 951-39-0705-8

Julkaisija: University of Jyväskylä

Julkaistu: 2000



THIS BOOK IS ABOUT BORDERS - boundaries, barriers, frontiers - about their function and development. The book gives some answers to the questions of why borders are needed, how they are constructed and how they may be changed. Authors dealing with these questions represent various academic fields: regional science, geography, sociology, political science, economics and history. The geographical focus is on the European North, in particular on the multi-faceted Finnish-Russian border, which has long been a fault line between 'East' and 'West'

The book highlights various practises that constructed the Finnish-Russian border; it shows how the cultural, social, economic and ideological boundaries have emerged over the course of history. The first chapters also reveal the plurality of the agency in the making of boundaries: how not only the politicians, but also scholars, border patrols, traders and migrants defined and marked the boundaries of Finland.

The case of the Finnish-Russian border and the north-eastern corner of Europe is examined in the context of de- and reterritorialisation, networking, trans-border regionalisation and local restructuring. The chapters deal, for instance, with Europeanisation, regionalisation and urban networking. Former clear-cut territories are now undergoing change and challenged by phenomena affecting the meanings and functions of cultural, political, economic and administrative borders. The book also gives some insights into the future of the boundaries in the second millennium.

This book is a comprehensive reader for students of border studies and those interested in border issues and East/West relations. In order to serve better as educational material, each chapter is followed by questions and suggestions for further reading.