Staffordshire

Staffordshire (abbreviated Staffs) is a landlocked county in the West Midlands region of England. The county town is Stafford. Part of the National Forest lies within its borders. It adjoins the ceremonial counties of Cheshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Warwickshire, West Midlands, Worcestershire and Shropshire.

The major city in Staffordshire is Stoke-on-Trent. Lichfield is also a city but is considerably smaller. Major towns include Burton-upon-Trent, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Tamworth and Stafford itself.

Staffordshire is divided into a number of districts. These are Cannock Chase, East Staffordshire, Lichfield, Newcastle-under-Lyme, South Staffordshire, Stafford, Staffordshire Moorlands and Tamworth. Stoke-on-Trent is administered as a separate unitary authority.

History

Main article History of Staffordshire.

The historic county of Staffordshire included Wolverhampton, Walsall, and West Bromwich, these were removed in 1974 to the new county of West Midlands. The resulting administrative area of Staffordshire has a narrow southwards protrusion that runs west of West Midlands to the border of Worcestershire. Further, Stoke-on-Trent was removed in the 1990s to form a unitary authority, but is still considered part of Staffordshire for ceremonial and geographical purposes.

Historically, Staffordshire was divided into the five hundreds of Cuttlestone, Offlow, Pirehill, Seisdon and Totmonslow.

Dogs

A type of bull terrier called the Staffordshire Bull Terrier was bred for hunting purposes in this county. Later, a fighting dog was created called the Staffordshire pit bull. They are known affectionately as "Staffies".

Railways

Due to Wedgewood's pottery being moved increasingly by road transport, and both the decline in mining, qarrying and farming in general, several once-busy stations were shut down. Staffordshire's railways were reduced by the Beeching report in the 1960s, and several stations, like Uttoxeter and Norton Bridge, only narrowly missed closure. Both Stone, Barlaston and Titensor, Wedgewood and Norton Bridge all closed in 2003, but may re-open due to heavy local campaigning around the town of Stone. Eturia, Longport and Kidsgrove closed in 2005, but only services to Eturia had any popular support.

  • Coald meace works - Closed by 1900.
  • Alton (Alton towers) - Closed by 1970. It may be reopened by the Alton Towers amusment park.
  • Great Bridgeford, Whitmore and Standon moor - Both freight-only by 1955 and closed by 1970.
  • Littelton colliery and Hume end - Closed by 1946.
  • Madeley - Freight-only by 1955 and closed by 2000.
  • Oakmoor - Freight-only by 1970 and closed by 2000. It may be reopened by the preservationists that now run Consall and some nearby stations on that line.
  • Consall - Closed by 1970, but was saved by a local steam preservation movement.
  • Leek, Chedale, Trentham guardens and Brownhills - All went freight-only by 1970 and closed by 2000.
  • Caldon Lowe - Station closed by 1946. A quarry-worker's halt was opened by 1970, but – like the quarry itself – closed by 2000.
  • Trentham colliery - Closed by 2000.
  • Florence colliery - Opened by 1970 and closed by 2000.
  • Stafford common- The station had closed by 1946 and the goods department closed by 2000.
  • Kingsley and Frognal goods depot - Closed by 1970.

The collieries handle mostly freight along with a few workers trains. Stoke-on-Trent's goods yard had closed by 2000 due to increased competition from road haulage.

Note: at both Brownhills, Oakmoor, Chedale, Caldon Lowe and Whitmore the lines are over-grown and/or the stations neglected; but they may re-open for freight trains or for use by railway enthusiasts.

References

Ian alan books - British railways atlas 1947, Complete atlas of railway station names (U.K., 2002 edition), Rail Atlas 1970, British railway atlas 1955. A few recent newspaper articles.

Geography

In the north and in the south the county is hilly, with wild moorlands in the far north and Cannock Chase an area of natural beauty in the south. In the middle regions the surface is low and undulating. Throughout the entire county there are vast and important coal fields. In the southern part there are also rich iron ore deposits. The largest river is the Trent. The soil is chiefly clay and agriculture was not highly developed until the mechanisation of farms.

Towns and villages

See the list of places in Staffordshire and the List of civil parishes in Staffordshire

Places of interest

  • Alton Towers
  • Lichfield Cathedral [1]
  • Shugborough Hall [2]
  • Blithfield Hall
  • Dovecliff Hall
  • Festival Park
  • Ford Green Hall, Smallthorne
  • Madeley Old Hall
  • Moseley Old Hall, Featherstone,_Staffordshire
  • Sandon Hall
  • Whitmore Hall
  • Biddulph Grange
  • Eccleshall Castle
  • Mow Cop Castle
  • Stafford Castle
  • Tamworth Castle
  • Tutbury Castle
  • Croxden Abbey
  • Broad Eye Windmill, Stafford
  • Cheddleton Flint Mill, watermill
  • Watermill housing Brindley Water Museum, Leek
  • Izaak Walton Cottage Museum
  • Weston Park
  • Cannock Chase
  • Hazel Slade Reserve
  • RSPB Coombes Valley
  • National Memorial Arboretum [3]
  • Trentham Gardens
  • Rudyard Lake
  • Tittesworth Reservoir [4]
  • Chasewater [5]
  • River Trent
  • River Blythe
  • River Churnet
  • Birmingham and Fazeley Canal
  • Caldon Canal
  • Coventry Canal
  • Shropshire Union Canal
  • Trent and Mersey Canal, Harecastle Tunnel
  • Heritage railways: Chasewater Railway, Foxfield Steam Railway, Manifold Valley Railway
  • Churnet Valley Railway [6]
  • Long distance footpaths: Heart of England Way, Staffordshire Way

Local Groups

  • West Midland Bird Club
  • Lichfield Cricket Club
  • Tipton Harriers

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See the list of places in Staffordshire and the List of civil parishes in Staffordshire. Contrary to the Marxist perspective, the anarchists see the state as an unnecessary evil, rather than a tool to be used in the class struggle. The soil is chiefly clay and agriculture was not highly developed until the mechanisation of farms. They believe that if the state and its restrictions on individual freedom were abolished, people could figure out how to work together peacefully and individual creativity would be unleashed. The largest river is the Trent. Totally rejecting the Hobbesian notion that only a state can prevent chaos, anarchists argue that the state's monopoly on violence creates chaos. In the southern part there are also rich iron ore deposits. Finally, in anarchist thinking, the state is nothing but an unnecessary and exploitative segment of society.

Throughout the entire county there are vast and important coal fields. Many conservatives, especially in recent decades, have come out in favor of the liberal theory of natural rights. In the middle regions the surface is low and undulating. Further, as with the liberals, the state is seen as always existing and/or "natural". In the north and in the south the county is hilly, with wild moorlands in the far north and Cannock Chase an area of natural beauty in the south. This perspective posits that, in general, current traditions only exist because they have been demonstrably successful in the past. A few recent newspaper articles. Thus, in a way, conservatives accept some ideas from both the Marxist and the liberal schools of thought, but view them in a different light: the state forces people to accept class and other kinds of domination, but this is seen as being for their own good.

Ian alan books - British railways atlas 1947, Complete atlas of railway station names (U.K., 2002 edition), Rail Atlas 1970, British railway atlas 1955. In conservative thinking, which is based on the theory of (super)natural authority, the existing structure of traditions and hierarchies (of class, patriarchy, ethnic dominance, etc.) is seen as benefiting society overall. Note: at both Brownhills, Oakmoor, Chedale, Caldon Lowe and Whitmore the lines are over-grown and/or the stations neglected; but they may re-open for freight trains or for use by railway enthusiasts. Once the process is complete, the communist social order has been achieved and the state no longer exists as an entity separate from the people. Stoke-on-Trent's goods yard had closed by 2000 due to increased competition from road haulage. This state ought subsequently to slowly "wither away" as the representative democracy of socialism gradually transforms into the direct democracy of communism. The collieries handle mostly freight along with a few workers trains. As such, there is some overlap between Marxism and contractarianism: the socialist state that Marxists wish to establish as their short-term goal is to be based on a form of social contract.

Eturia, Longport and Kidsgrove closed in 2005, but only services to Eturia had any popular support. Thus, Marxism is opposed to the state (which it views as illegitimate, in accordance with the conflict theory), but does not wish to abolish the state immediately. Both Stone, Barlaston and Titensor, Wedgewood and Norton Bridge all closed in 2003, but may re-open due to heavy local campaigning around the town of Stone. Communism, the final goal, is a classless, propertyless and stateless society; however, socialism still preserves personal property and a (democratic) state. Staffordshire's railways were reduced by the Beeching report in the 1960s, and several stations, like Uttoxeter and Norton Bridge, only narrowly missed closure. Further, in Marxist theory, classes and other forms of exploitation should be abolished by establishing a socialist system, to be followed later by a communist one. Due to Wedgewood's pottery being moved increasingly by road transport, and both the decline in mining, qarrying and farming in general, several once-busy stations were shut down. In modern Marxian theory, such class domination can coincide with other forms of domination (such as patriarchy and ethnic hierarchies).

They are known affectionately as "Staffies". Under capitalism, on the other hand, the use of force is centralized in a specialized organization which protects the capitalists' class monopoly of ownership of the means of production, allowing the exploitation of those without such ownership. Later, a fighting dog was created called the Staffordshire pit bull. Under such systems as feudalism, the lords used their own military force to exploit their vassals. A type of bull terrier called the Staffordshire Bull Terrier was bred for hunting purposes in this county. The state also mediates in all types of social conflicts, and supplies necessary social-infrastructural conditions for society as a whole. Historically, Staffordshire was divided into the five hundreds of Cuttlestone, Offlow, Pirehill, Seisdon and Totmonslow. In this view, the primary role of the state in practice is to enforce the existing system of unequal property and personal rights, class domination, and exploitation.

Further, Stoke-on-Trent was removed in the 1990s to form a unitary authority, but is still considered part of Staffordshire for ceremonial and geographical purposes. The Marxist philosophy of the state is based on the conflict theory - specifically, on the idea of class conflict. The resulting administrative area of Staffordshire has a narrow southwards protrusion that runs west of West Midlands to the border of Worcestershire. They stand in opposition to adherents of the natural rights theory, who tend to be libertarians, falling on the right wing of liberalism and arguing for a "minimal" state. The historic county of Staffordshire included Wolverhampton, Walsall, and West Bromwich, these were removed in 1974 to the new county of West Midlands. In most cases, they fall on the left wing of liberalism, being social liberals ("New Deal" liberals; see American liberalism) and arguing for a welfare state. Main article History of Staffordshire.. On the other hand, there are also liberals who subscribe to the contractarian theory.

. Critics argue that they do not exist at all, since they are not evident from any observations of nature. Stoke-on-Trent is administered as a separate unitary authority. However, there has been considerable debate among liberals as to what these natural rights actually are. These are Cannock Chase, East Staffordshire, Lichfield, Newcastle-under-Lyme, South Staffordshire, Stafford, Staffordshire Moorlands and Tamworth. The liberal philosophy of the state holds that the powers of any state are restricted by natural rights that exist independently of the human mind and overrule any social contract. Staffordshire is divided into a number of districts. Historically, liberals have been less concerned with determining what the state should do and far more interested in stipulating what the state shouldn't do.

Major towns include Burton-upon-Trent, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Tamworth and Stafford itself. For example, John Locke believed that individual property rights existed prior to the creation of the state, while the state's main job should be to preserve those rights. Lichfield is also a city but is considerably smaller. In this view, some or even all "rights" exist naturally and are not created by the state. The major city in Staffordshire is Stoke-on-Trent. Liberalism, in the classical sense, is based mainly on the natural rights theory. It adjoins the ceremonial counties of Cheshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Warwickshire, West Midlands, Worcestershire and Shropshire. The state provides public goods and other kinds of collective consumption, while preventing individuals from free-riding (taking advantage of collective consumption without paying) by forcing them to pay taxes.

Part of the National Forest lies within its borders. In contractarian thinking, the state should express the public interest, the interests of the whole society, and reconcile it with the separate interests of individuals. The county town is Stafford. Contractarianism is the foundation of modern democracy, as well as most forms of socialism and some types of liberalism. Staffordshire (abbreviated Staffs) is a landlocked county in the West Midlands region of England. It is also the only major philosophy of the state that does not fall within any single political ideology - perhaps because several different ideologies have adopted it as their own. Tipton Harriers. Contractarianism, as the name implies, is based on the social contract theory.

Lichfield Cricket Club. There are at least five major philosophies of the state today, the last four of which correspond to specific political ideologies: contractarianism, liberalism, Marxism, conservatism, and anarchism. West Midland Bird Club. The conflict theory, in particular, is often combined with one of the other three in order to separate the illegitimate states (those created through conflict and subjugation) from the legitimate ones. Long distance footpaths: Heart of England Way, Staffordshire Way. In practice, most people (and most political philosophies) subscribe to a combination of two or more of the above theories - arguing, for example, that different states have different origins. Churnet Valley Railway [6]. These four theories can accommodate the full spectrum of political views.

Heritage railways: Chasewater Railway, Foxfield Steam Railway, Manifold Valley Railway. They are:. Trent and Mersey Canal, Harecastle Tunnel. There are four theories about the origin (and indirectly the justification) of the state. Shropshire Union Canal. Recent philosophers like John Rawls and Robert Nozick were more concerned with distributive justice and the morality of exercising political power. Coventry Canal. Philosophers such as Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau pondered issues concerning the ideal and actual roles of the state.

Caldon Canal. In the modern era, these philosophies emerged with the rise of capitalism, which coincided with the (re)emergence of the state as a separate and centralized sector of society. Birmingham and Fazeley Canal. Different political philosophies have distinct opinions concerning the state as a domestic organization. River Churnet. Many (especially those who favour constitutional theories of international law) therefore reject as outdated the idea of sovereignty, and view the state as just the chief political subdivision of the planet. River Blythe. But the trend at the moment is for the power of superstate levels of governance to increase, and there is no sign of this increase abating.

River Trent. However, although states are often influenced in their decisions and no longer hold an absolute jurisdiction over their internal affairs, they are nonetheless much stronger in relation to international organizations or to other states than lower (substate) political subdivisions normally are. Chasewater [5]. The study of political economy, which evolved into the modern study of economics, deals with these specific questions in more detail. Tittesworth Reservoir [4]. North American Free Trade Agreement, European Union, it is always controversial to do so, and opens the question of whether these blocs are in fact simply larger states. Rudyard Lake. Although many states (by their own decision) increasingly cede these powers to trade bloc entities, e.g.

Trentham Gardens. One of the most basic characteristics of a modern state is regulation of property rights, investment, trade and the commodity markets (in food, fuel, etc.) typically using its own currency. National Memorial Arboretum [3]. These cases are sometimes called "failed states". RSPB Coombes Valley. For example, in countries such as Somalia, Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the central state has so far not succeeded in monopolizing the legitimate use of force, and must compete with various local warlords. Hazel Slade Reserve. Many institutions that have been called "states" do not live up to this definition.

Cannock Chase. For Weber, this was an "ideal type", or model, or pure case of the state. Weston Park. Also in this tradition, the state differs from the "government": the latter refers to the group of people who make decisions for the state. Izaak Walton Cottage Museum. In this tradition, Max Weber and Norbert Elias defined the state as an organization of people that has a monopoly on the legitimate use of force in a particular geographic area. Watermill housing Brindley Water Museum, Leek. The English political philosopher Thomas Hobbes argued that in order to avoid a multi-sided civil war, in which life was "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short", individuals must necessarily surrender many of their "natural rights" -- including that of attacking each other -- to the "Leviathan", a unified and centralized state.

Cheddleton Flint Mill, watermill. Those studying this dimension emphasize the relationship between the state and its people. Broad Eye Windmill, Stafford. Looked at from the point of view of an individual nation, the state is a centralized organization of the whole country. Croxden Abbey. See The Montevideo Convention and Military Occupation. Tutbury Castle. Hartzell is a leading proponent of this view, and stresses that the four criteria of article 1 need to be expanded to nine.

Tamworth Castle. Richard W. Stafford Castle. Article 1 of the convention is also attacked by those who claim that it fails to take into account the complicated situations of military occupation, territorial cession, and governments in exile. Mow Cop Castle. However the self-declared republic has not achieved recognition by other states. Eccleshall Castle. An example in practice was the collapse of central government in Somalia in the early 1990s: the Montevideo convention would imply that the state of Somalia no longer existed, and the subsequently declared republic of Somaliland (comprising part of the so-called "former" Somalia) may meet the criteria for statehood.

Biddulph Grange. Which theory is correct is a controversial issue in international law. Whitmore Hall. On the other hand, article 3 of the convention is attacked by the advocates of the constitutive theory of statehood, where a state exists only insofar as it is recognized by other states. Sandon Hall. While the Montevideo is a regional American convention and has no legal effect outside the Americas, some have nonetheless seen it as an accurate statement of customary international law. Moseley Old Hall, Featherstone,_Staffordshire. This is the declarative theory of statehood.

Madeley Old Hall. Also, in article 3 it very clearly states that statehood is independent of recognition by other states. Ford Green Hall, Smallthorne. A document that is often quoted on the matter is the Montevideo Convention from 1933, the first article of which states:. Festival Park. The legal criteria for statehood are not obvious. Dovecliff Hall. The nation state has remained the dominant political entity all over the world ever since, even though the many ideologies of the 19th and 20th century have created numerous different ways of running the affairs of nation states, as well as numerous different forms of internal and external organization (see political system and economic system).

Blithfield Hall. In response, conquered and neighboring principalities discarded their old systems and adopted the new model of the nation state. Shugborough Hall [2]. Claiming 'national will' as its justification, Napoleon and the Grande Armee of France swept over Europe. Lichfield Cathedral [1]. Nearly a century and a half after the Peace of Westphalia, the state became fully modern through the French Revolution. Alton Towers. The growing numbers of civil servants eventually became known as the bureaucracy after the elevation of the Republican ideal.

Kingsley and Frognal goods depot - Closed by 1970. The state continued to develop as monarchs brought nobles and free towns into line and amassed spectacular resources and prestige. Stafford common- The station had closed by 1946 and the goods department closed by 2000. The modern state was born. Florence colliery - Opened by 1970 and closed by 2000. In Germany, the office of the Holy Roman Emperor, the most prominent symbol of lingering institutions of feudalism, was emasculated as a secular authority in favor of the constituent elements of the Holy Roman Empire. Trentham colliery - Closed by 2000. The principle of "cuius regio, eius religio" established at Westphalia and previously in the Peace of Augsburg set a precedent of noninterference in other states' internal affairs that was key in the evolution of the modern state.

A quarry-worker's halt was opened by 1970, but – like the quarry itself – closed by 2000. In 1648, the powers of Europe signed the Treaty of Westphalia which ended the religious violence for purely political motives and the Church was stripped of temporal power - even though religion continued to play a political role as the foundation of the divine right of kings. Caldon Lowe - Station closed by 1946. These conflicts culminated in the Thirty Years' War of the 17th century. Leek, Chedale, Trentham guardens and Brownhills - All went freight-only by 1970 and closed by 2000. The bloody conflicts that followed, blending the religious and political, pitted those who asserted the authority of the Pope (and in Germany, the Holy Roman Emperor) against those who asserted the authority of secular authorities and their sovereign ability to make internal policy, particularly when that policy reflected religious affiliation, Roman Catholic or Protestant. Consall - Closed by 1970, but was saved by a local steam preservation movement. The Reformation was to have a powerful impact on the structure of European politics; the dispute was not only theological, but also threatened the very fabric of the ancient political institutions of feudalism.

It may be reopened by the preservationists that now run Consall and some nearby stations on that line. The great dynasties of Europe dramatically consolidated power by the beginning of the 16th century; additionally, the external threats to Europe had considerably lessened. Oakmoor - Freight-only by 1970 and closed by 2000. This shift to more independent, more secular actors would become a major point of controversy in Early Modern Europe. Madeley - Freight-only by 1955 and closed by 2000. The emergence of large, stable land holdings by single dynasties - for instance, France and Castile - enabled them to take a more active and independent role than their traditionally subsidiary role in the earlier middle ages. Littelton colliery and Hume end - Closed by 1946. The weakening of the papacy was a major theme of the Middle Ages; the Western Schism in the later 14th century, a dispute over papal succession, was exploited by secular authorities and contributed to their growing power.

Great Bridgeford, Whitmore and Standon moor - Both freight-only by 1955 and closed by 1970. The Holy Roman Empire, one of the strongest medieval authorities, emerged as a competitor to Papal power under Holy Roman Emperor Frederick Barbarossa, who invaded Italy to press his claims to secular authority in the mid-12th century. It may be reopened by the Alton Towers amusment park. In 1302, Pope Boniface VIII stated that the political powers of Christendom exercised their prerogatives "at the command and sufferance of the priest." This limited the power of kings, who were obliged to pledge their ultimate allegiance to the Pope. Alton (Alton towers) - Closed by 1970. This system asserted itself abroad in the form of the Crusades as the Middle Ages progressed. Coald meace works - Closed by 1900. This system produced an extensive framework of institutions - sometimes called "feudalism" - that regulated internal conflict and enabled Western Europe to confront exterior threats, even while no individual secular entity was truly independent in the sense of the modern state.

Religion, which had rarely been a factor in the power calculations of Ancient Greece and the Roman Empire, became the cornerstone of an extremely loose pan-European defensive bloc under the aegis of the Catholic Church. The solution that evolved out of these affairs was decidedly opposed to the system of independent states and temporary alliances that dominate the modern international system. At the same time, the various kingdoms (and smaller political units) were often involved in wars with each other over territory and succession. The kingdoms of Western Europe were besieged by invaders on the frontiers - first, the Muslim invasions from the south, then a series of new migrations from the east and finally the Viking invasions from the north.

The lack of a real successor to the Roman Empire in Western Europe created a power vacuum. Once again, the state became little more than an expression of the ruler's private ownership of a certain area of land. These kingdoms were treated more as land holdings by the royalty that ruled them. Even the kingdom of Charlemagne was fleeting; without the tradition of primogeniture, it dissolved into three smaller kingdoms with the Treaty of Verdun in 843.

The "barbarian" (i.e., non-Roman) kingdoms and chieftains that followed the Roman Empire were ephemeral and transitory and bore little resemblance to the modern state. The fall of the Roman Empire in the west and the Great Migrations changed the character of European politics. However, the Roman Republic gave way to the Roman Empire - which, in turn, created the concept of universal empire: the idea that the entire world was (or should be) under the authority of one single legitimate state. Many institutions of the modern state (especially in Western Europe and areas once dominated by Western-European empires) can trace their origins back to Ancient Rome, which inherited the political traditions of the Greeks and developed them further (particularly the rule of law, albeit in incomplete form).

Also, notably, the idea of democracy was born in ancient Athens (see Athenian democracy). The city-states of Ancient Greece were the first to establish states whose powers were clearly defined in laws (even if the laws themselves could usually be changed quite easily). Thus, laws limiting the power of monarchs did not develop very far in that region. But the rulers of the Ancient Near East had a long tradition of holding absolute power and claiming the status of god-kings (see hydraulic despotism).

It was around this time that the concept of law - one of the foundations of the modern state - began to appear. 1700 BC. One of the earliest known sets of laws, the Code of Hammurabi, has been dated to ca. Since there were no laws and no infrastructure, and since power was exercised arbitrarily, some political theorists and historians do not consider such early forms of despotic rule to have been states in the proper sense of the word; they are sometimes called proto-states.

These states were usually despotic and unstable, with the ruler(s) holding absolute power over their subjects until some other ruler(s) displaced them. This control over the land meant control over the people whose livelihoods depended on the land; thus, the first primitive states arose. Eventually, a small group of people found themselves owning the land on which many other people worked for a living. In some parts of the world, notably Mesopotamia and the Nile valley, natural conditions favoured the concentration of land ownership in few hands.

Disagreements over the nature and extent of such claims of ownership degenerated into violence and the first "wars". To express that control, various forms of property rights developed, with people claiming different kinds of rights over various areas of land. Thus, control over land became an issue for the first time. The practice of agriculture made it necessary for human beings to build permanent settlements and spend most of their lives in close proximity to the land they cultivated.

That lifestyle began to change with the invention of agriculture around the 9th millennium BC. For most of the existence of the human species, people lived as nomadic hunter-gatherers. The birth of the state, in the broadest sense of the word, coincides with the rise of civilization. However, when these terms are used to describe the statehood aspirations of a people who do not currently live in the internationally recognised independent state they would like to inhabit, these terms can be controversial and open to misunderstanding.

In most English-speaking counties when the terms state, nation and country are used internally, they are understood by the context in which they are used and are not controversial. The terminology can be further complicated by the use of the word state to mean a non-sovereign sub-entity of as sovereign state, as is done in the  United States and  Australia. The United Kingdom is an internationally recognised sovereign state, which is also referred to as a country and whose inhabitants have British nationality. For example, Cornwall is considered by some to be a nation in England which is a constituent country, or home nation, of the  United Kingdom.

In the English language, the terms nation (cultural), country (geographical) and state (political) do have precise meanings, but in daily speech and writing they are often used interchangeably, and are open to different interpretations. A similar association of terms can today be seen in the practice of referring to government buildings as having authority, for example "The White House today released a press statement...". By process of metonymy, the word state became used to refer to both the head of state and the power entity he represented (though the former meaning has fallen out of use). The word "state" originates from the medieval state or throne upon which the head of state (usually a monarch) would sit.

Currently, the entire land surface of the Earth is divided among the territories of the roughly two hundred states now existing, with the special case of Antarctica, a variety of disputed territories, and a number of areas where state power exists in theory, but not in practice (the most significant of these being Somalia. Errico Malatesta wrote that "Anarchists generally make use if the word "State" to mean all the collection of institutions, political, legislative, judicial, military, financial, etc., by means of which management of their own affairs, the guidance of their personal conduct, and the care of ensuring their own safety are taken from the people and confided to certain individuals, and these, whether by usurpation or delegation, are invested with the right to make laws over and for all, and to constrain the public to respect them, making use of the collective force of the community to this end.". In common speech, the terms country, nation and state are casually used as synonyms, but in a more strict usage they are distinguished:. See state (law) and state (non-sovereign).

The term "state" is also used to describe subnational territorial divisions within a federal system, as in the case of the United States of America. A number of modern commentators have claimed that we are experiencing the decline of the Westphalian state as the principal actor of the international system, pointing to economic, cultural, political, and technological changes in the world, such as globalization and the emergence of regional and supernational groupings such as the European Union. In this sense, the modern state is an entity that enjoys extensive autonomy in its domestic economic and social policy, largely free from interference from other states and powers. The word "state" in contemporary parlance often means the "Westphalian state", in reference to the Peace of Westphalia of 1648 and is used most often in international relations theory.

. For more information see government. The "state" can also be defined in terms of domestic conditions, specifically, as conceptualized by Max Weber, "a state is a human community that (successfully) claims the monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force within a given territory." [1] The exact meaning of this definition depends on what is understood by "legitimate". Recognition of the state's claim to independence by other states, enabling it to enter into international agreements, is often important to the establishment of its statehood, although some theories do not make this a requirement - for instance, the Montevideo Convention.

A state is an organized political community occupying a definite territory, having an organized government, and possessing internal and external sovereignty. Various groups of people fought each other for control over land or other resources, and the winning side imposed its domination on the losing side. Conflict - Perhaps the simplest of the theories, it holds that the state did not arise out of any conscious decision, but merely as the result of violent conflict. through the consent of the governed) in order to provide for various collective needs that cannot be satisfied through individual efforts, such as national defense, public roads, education, "the general welfare", etc.

Social contract - This idea holds that the state is established by the people (i.e. Natural rights - According to this theory, human beings have certain rights that are "natural" (the implications of this word may vary), and establish states for the protection of those rights. Supernatural or natural authority - In this view, the state is either ordained by a higher power (such as God for the "Divine right of kings") or arises naturally out of a presumed human need for order and authority. state refers to the government, and an entity in international law.

nation designates a people (however, national and international both confusingly refer as well to matters pertaining to what are strictly states, as in "national capital", "international law"). country is the geographical area.

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