La scacchiera immaginata: il Grande Gioco fra visioni imperialiste, narrazioni orientaliste e ambizioni personali

Riccardo Redaelli*

*Autore corrispondente per questo lavoro

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivista


This paper aims to present the main themes analysed within this volume while introducing the different studies and related approaches of the authors, connected to the so-called “Great Game”. Starting from the perspective of the British experience, this essay will frame the historical context of this geopolitical competition between imperial powers during the XIX century, whose origin preceded the “Great Game” itself, yet it will come back later with the so-called “arms race” that paved the way for the outbreak of the First World War. Central Asia become the ground of the rivalries between the great powers of the time, resembling a sort of “chessboard” on which the Russian, the French and the British empires moved through to impose their territorial domain, each of them with their own political priorities, narratives, and obsessions leading to strategic decisions. Beyond the description of the historical competition that occurred in the XIX century, this essay aims to shed lights on the role of military commanders and British officials, as supposed “young pawns” who, on the contrary, often implemented their own strategies according to their personal ambitions, widespread prejudices of locals, lack of territorial knowledge, as well as deep misconceptions of the competitors. Therefore, it is important to acutely underline the role of narratives in supporting military and diplomatic missions. Much more than a “game”, the competition in Central Asia shown the strength to consolidate respective zones of influence, but also how personal ambitions and self-perceptions of superiority has been used to justify political influence and domain.
Titolo tradotto del contributo[Autom. eng. transl.] The imagined chessboard: the Great Game between imperialist visions, Orientalist narratives and personal ambitions
Lingua originaleItalian
pagine (da-a)5-28
Numero di pagine24
RivistaStoria urbana
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2018


  • central asia
  • colonialism
  • great game


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