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The Antarctic territorial issue: An analysis of the occupation theories

Grant number: 14/08282-8
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2014
Effective date (End): June 30, 2015
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Political Science - International Politics
Principal Investigator:Rodrigo Duarte Fernandes dos Passos
Grantee:Stefany Lucchesi Simões
Home Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia e Ciências (FFC). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Marília. Marília , SP, Brazil


Antarctica's occupation is an extremely relevant subject, however little discussed nowadays. The historical background presents various difficulties about the treatment of this issue, which involve the diverse interests of the embraced States, since economic until environmental and political subjects. The general division of thoughts is made in two points of view, the internationalist and territorialism, as will be specified in the introduction. The theories are the quadrant theory, the sectors theory, the discovery theory, the contiguity and continuity theory, the effective occupation theory and the confrontation theory. Those six occupation theories, which are influenced by the elements previously named and by the strong importance of geopolitics, will be the main object of the research presented in this project. Nowadays, its administration is made based on the Antarctica Treaty, signed in 1959 by twelve countries, which are Argentina, Great Britain, Russia (former Soviet Union), France, Belgium, Chile, Japan, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, Norway and the United States of America, and posteriorly by other countries. Those States committed to abide in the continent only for pacific means, as to conduct scientific research with the installation of bases and banning the entrance of any military equipment. Nevertheless, the existence of the theories only proves that, even with the international treaty, the interests of their domination still exist.