Viewing the Channel RegionViewing the Channel Region
A world within Europe
Author: Pascal Buléon
Translation: Louis Shurmer-Smith



Amongst the most frequented sea passages there are those that men themselves have imagined and constructed, the wondrous result of audaciousness, effort and knowledge; the first of which are the Canals of Suez and Panama. These were cut through to avoid the long circumnavigation of continents, the dangers of Cape Horn and the Cape of Good Hope; they were part of the drive to compress space-time, an enduring ambition of modern human existence. But there are also the natural sea passages, those shaped by geography linked to political and economic history of long duration. The China Sea and the English Channel belong to this category. These are the seas where the whole world makes a rendez-vous.