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Expo ’67 in Montreal and Expo ’74 in Spokane took strikingly different stances regarding human-nature relations. The title of the first was “Man and His World.” Here, the Soviet pavilion exhibited the Krasnoyarsk Dam to showcase its conquest of nature. The exploitation of “idle” Siberian resources, like hydro-energy, was bound to fulfill the promise to “catch and overtake” the United States. Yet, the global environmental awakening of the 1960s added a “green race” to existing Cold War races and propelled environmental cooperation. Spokane’s Expo became the first environmental world's fair with the motto “Progress without Pollution.” Now, the ussr exhibited the Krasnoyarsk Dam as an inseparable part of the landscape and the new “green” socialist settlements to demonstrate the industry’s harmony with nature. An envoy for Soviet environmentalism, the display was responsive both to raising global concerns and to the detrimental environmental consequences of industrialization on the ground in Siberia.

In: Diplomatica
Free access
In: Diplomatica

Abstract

Analyzing several documentary films and other sources through the lens of gender and feminist theory, this article explores the role of hunting and nature in Soviet diplomatic relationships. The article views diplomacy as a masculine space in which diplomatic negotiations relied on successful displays of toughness and the exhibition of prowess and agility. These skills were best demonstrated not in the official corridors of power but in settings imbued with symbolic meanings associated with masculinity, such as nature. The latter often served as a homosocial space where power was displayed and reconstituted through ritualistic performances of heroic masculinity. Such rituals as hunting sought to accomplish several goals. They promoted the male bonding that formed the basis of a preferred personal style of diplomacy and allowed Soviet apparatchiks to display marksmanship skills and a level of physical prowess that would present them to their foreign counterparts as potent leaders and desired allies. More importantly, as with other performative rituals of masculinity, Soviet diplomatic hunts produced and reproduced masculinity – and with it, power – and served strategically to assert or challenge international hierarchies, shape new and reaffirm faltering alliances, and demonstrate the agility and potency of the Soviet system to visiting state leaders.

In: Diplomatica

Abstract

The term “water diplomacy” has gained currency among policy makers and academics. It reflects an awareness that the use, management, and protection of transboundary water resources is intrinsically political and often embedded in complex political settings. Based on a review of academic and policy documents, we analyze the variety of understandings and common patterns in the definition of water diplomacy. We also analyze tools, tracks, and levels through which and at which water diplomacy is conducted or analyzed. With our own definition of water diplomacy as deliberative political processes and practices of preventing, mitigating, and resolving disputes over transboundary water resources and developing joint water governance arrangements by applying foreign policy means which are embedded in bi- and/or multilateral relations beyond the water sector and taking place at different tracks and scales, we aim to advance the discourse on water diplomacy both in the academic and policy realms.

Open Access
In: Diplomatica
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Abstract

As surprising as it may seem at the first sight, one of the most detailed fragments of a diplomatic report summarizing a mission to Poland and Lithuania written in 1572 by a secretary of a papal nuncio dealt with an animal – the European bison. In fact, representations of nature were omnipresent in sixteenth-century papal and Venetian diplomatic accounts about the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. The main aim of this article is to demonstrate how and why climate, landscapes, natural resources, and animals came to be an important part of early modern diplomatic communication.

In: Diplomatica

Abstract

This article demonstrates how natural resources can be an asset for countries’ international influence while advancing national interests specially related to cultural economy. It focuses on Jingdezhen, the Chinese porcelain capital, a creative city in unesco Creative Cities Network, which has succeeded in extolling Chinese culture by converting its “white gold” into soft power by way of effective city diplomacy.

In: Diplomatica