Territories beyond possession? Antarctica and Outer Space

Article


Collis, Christy. 2017. "Territories beyond possession? Antarctica and Outer Space." The Polar Journal. 7 (2), pp. 287-302. https://doi.org/10.1080/2154896X.2017.1373912
Article Title

Territories beyond possession? Antarctica and Outer Space

ERA Journal ID201633
Article CategoryArticle
Authors
AuthorCollis, Christy
Journal TitleThe Polar Journal
Journal Citation7 (2), pp. 287-302
Number of Pages16
Year2017
Place of PublicationUnited Kingdom
ISSN2154-896X
2154-8978
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1080/2154896X.2017.1373912
Web Address (URL)https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/2154896X.2017.1373912
Abstract

It is often assumed that Antarctica and Outer Space are simple, un-owned spaces. To some extent, this is correct: neither of these vast areas of our planetary environment is partitioned into standard state-sovereign spatial units. But it would be naive to assume, therefore, that Antarctica and Outer Space are therefore exceptional, similar, uncontested spaces of 'peace and science,' free from the territorial drives of states and non-state actors such as mining corporations. There are important minerals in both spaces; both spaces have significant strategic value to both states and non-state actors. This article anatomises to what extent Antarctica and Outer Space are un-owned spaces. Whether they are terra nullius—land owned by no one—or terra communis—land collectively owned by humanity—remains a fundamental tension in the international laws and treaties that produce them as legal geographies (Collis 2012). This article studies the legal geographies of these related spaces, highlighting the congruencies and the differences between them. In doing so, it explains not only the nature of terra nullius and terra communis today, but also analyses the ways in which these ‘non-territories’ comprise a notable component of contemporary geopolitics. Antarctica comprises seven huge, 'frozen' state territorial claims, established and maintained by formal state practices of 'effective occupation.' The geostationary orbit is partitioned into spatial segments, or arcs, assigned to states; the status of non-state actors in Outer Space remains the subject of substantial speculation and discussion. As minerals in the accessible areas of Earth become more scarce, and as technology makes mineral extraction and military use of uninhabitable spaces increasingly feasible, it is crucial that discussions of their futures be grounded in a strong understanding of their current legal geographies. This article contributes a critical perspective to that project, as well as offering insights into the contemporary nature of ‘territory’ itself.

KeywordsAntarctica; legal geography; Outer Space; territory
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020440601. Cultural geography
Public Notes

Files associated with this item cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.

Byline AffiliationsQueensland University of Technology
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
Permalink -

https://research.usq.edu.au/item/q759x/territories-beyond-possession-antarctica-and-outer-space

  • 167
    total views
  • 3
    total downloads
  • 0
    views this month
  • 0
    downloads this month

Export as

Related outputs

The Brisbane Media Map: Connecting Students, Industry, and University through Authentic Learning
Collis, Christy. 2006. "The Brisbane Media Map: Connecting Students, Industry, and University through Authentic Learning." 7th International Conference on Information Technology Based Higher Education and Training (ITHET 2006). Sydney, Australia 10 - 13 Jul 2006 New Jersey, United States. https://doi.org/10.1109/ITHET.2006.339773
Assault on the unknown: the historical and political geographies of the International Geophysical Year (1957–8)
Collis, Christy and Dodds, Klaus. 2008. "Assault on the unknown: the historical and political geographies of the International Geophysical Year (1957–8)." Journal of Historical Geography. 34 (4), pp. 555-573. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhg.2008.05.016
Walking and sitting in the Australian Antarctic territory: Mobility and imperial space
Collis, Christy. 2010. "Walking and sitting in the Australian Antarctic territory: Mobility and imperial space." Vannini, Phillip (ed.) The Cultures of Alternative Mobilities: Routes Less Travelled. London, United Kingdom. Ashgate Publishing Limited. pp. 39-54
The geostationary orbit: a critical legal geography of space’s most valuable real estate
Collis, Christy. 2009. "The geostationary orbit: a critical legal geography of space’s most valuable real estate." The Sociological Review. 57 (1), pp. 47-65. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-954X.2009.01816.x
Mawson and Mirnyy Stations: the spatiality of the Australian Antarctic Territory, 1954-61
Collis, Christy. 2007. "Mawson and Mirnyy Stations: the spatiality of the Australian Antarctic Territory, 1954-61." Australian Geographer. 38 (2), pp. 215-231. https://doi.org/10.1080/00049180701422407
Cold colonies: Antarctic spatialities at Mawson and McMurdo stations
Collis, Christy and Stevens, Quentin. 2007. "Cold colonies: Antarctic spatialities at Mawson and McMurdo stations." Cultural Geographies. 14 (2), pp. 234-254. https://doi.org/10.1177/1474474007075356
The Proclamation Island Moment: Making Antarctica Australian
Collis, Christy. 2005. "The Proclamation Island Moment: Making Antarctica Australian." Carter, David and Crotty, Martin (ed.) Australian Studies Centre 25th Anniversary Collection. Saint Lucia, Australia. University of Queensland. pp. 184-197
Sites of benevolence
Collis, Christy and Nolan, Maggie. 2005. "Sites of benevolence." Journal of Australian Studies. 29 (85), pp. 5-10. https://doi.org/10.1080/14443050509388011
Media mapping: Reflections on Australian and Swedish experiences with a new educational technology in media and communication studies
Spurgeon, Christina, Foth, Marcus, Severson, Pernilla and Collis, Christy. 2006. "Media mapping: Reflections on Australian and Swedish experiences with a new educational technology in media and communication studies." Electronic Journal of Communication. 61 (1-2), pp. 1-20.
Web-based Industry Partner Portals to University Workplace Learning Programs: Implementation and Design Issues
Collis, Christy and Seeto, Deidre. 2008. "Web-based Industry Partner Portals to University Workplace Learning Programs: Implementation and Design Issues." Montgomerie, C. (ed.) ED-MEDIA 2008: World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia and Telecommunications 2008. Vienna, Austria 30 Jun - 04 Jul 2008 Charlottesville, United States.
Australia's Antarctic Turf
Collis, Christy. 2004. "Australia's Antarctic Turf." M/C Journal. 7 (2), pp. 1-4. https://doi.org/10.5204/mcj.2330
Learning From the Pandemic: The Impacts of Moving Student-Staff Partnerships Online
Judd, Madelaine-Marie, Spinelli, Franciele, Szucs, Brooke, Crisp, Naima, Groening, Julia, Collis, Christy, Batorowicz, Beata, Willox, Dino, Richards, Anna, Judd M.M., Spinelli F., Szucs B., Crisp N., Groening J., Collis C., Batorowicz B., Willox D. and Richards A.. 2021. "Learning From the Pandemic: The Impacts of Moving Student-Staff Partnerships Online." Student Success. 12 (3), pp. 73-83. https://doi.org/10.5204/ssj.1774
Introduction — Popular Cultures and the Law
Collis, Christy and Bainbridge, Jason. 2005. "Introduction — Popular Cultures and the Law." Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies. 19 (2), pp. 159-164. https://doi.org/10.1080/10304310500084335