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GEOG101 Chapt01 lecture

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  • 1. Overview
    • What is Geography?
    • Evolution of the Discipline
    • Some Core Geographic Concepts
    • Geography’s Themes and Standards
    • Organization of This Book
  • 2. What is Geography?
    • Much more than place names and locations
    • The study of spatial variation
      • How and why things differ from place to place on the surface of the earth
      • How observable spatial patterns evolved through time
      • Focus on the interaction of people and social groups with their environment and with each other
    • Geography is about space and the content of space
  • 3. Evolution of the Discipline
    • Ancient Greeks and Romans
      • From Greek geo, “the earth,” and graphein, “to write”
      • E.g., Eratosthenes, Strabo, Herodotus, Ptolemy
    • Ancient Chinese
    • Muslim scholars
    • Modern geography
      • Origins in the surge of scholarly inquiry that began in 17 th century Europe
  • 4. Subfields of Geography
    • A number of specialized subdivisions
      • Closely interrelated
    • Three dominating interests
      • Spatial variation of physical and human phenomena on the surface of the earth
      • The systems that link physical phenomena and human activities in one area with other areas
      • Human-environmental relationships and spatial systems in specific locational settings
  • 5. Subfields of Geography
    • Regional geography
      • Identify particular segments of the earth’s surface for study
    • Systematic geography
      • Identify particular classes of things for study
    • Physical geography
      • Focus is on the natural environment
    • Human geography
      • Focus is on people
  • 6. Why Geography Matters
    • The only discipline concerned with understanding why and how both physical and cultural phenomena differ from place to place
    • Vital to an understanding of national and international issues
    • Offers a diversity of job opportunities
  • 7. Some Core Geographic Concepts
    • Spatial is an essential modifier in forming questions and framing concepts
      • Geography is a spatial science
    • The geographer’s space is earth space
      • The way things are distributed
      • The way movements occur
      • The way processes operate
  • 8. Some Core Geographic Concepts
    • Basic observations regarding places:
      • They have location, direction, and distance with respect to other places
      • They have size
      • They have both physical structure and cultural content
      • Their attributes develop and change over time
      • Their content is structured and explainable
      • Their elements interrelate with other places
      • They may be generalized into regions of similarities and differences
  • 9. Location
    • Absolute location
      • Based on a precise and accepted system of coordinates--mathematical location
        • Latitude and longitude
        • Other grid systems
    • Relative location
      • Position in relation to other places or things
      • Expresses spatial interconnection and interdependence
      • May carry social and economic implications
  • 10. Location
    • Site
      • Physical and cultural characteristics of a place
      • Absolute location concept
    • Situation
      • External relations of a place
      • Expression of relative location
  • 11. Direction
    • Absolute direction
      • Based on the cardinal points (N-S-E-W)
    • Relative direction
      • Culturally based and locationally variable
        • “ Out West”
        • “ Back East”
        • “ Down South”
        • “ Near East”
        • “ Far East”
  • 12. Distance
    • Absolute distance
      • Uses standard units such as miles or kilometers
    • Relative distance
      • Transforms linear measurements into other units more meaningful for the space relationship in question
        • Time, money, psychological
  • 13. Size and Scale
    • Degree of generalization represented
      • Reference to the size of unit studied
        • E.g., local or global
      • Relationship between the size of an area on a map and the actual size of the mapped area on the surface of the earth
  • 14. Physical and Cultural Attributes
    • Physical attributes
      • Climate, soil, water supplies, mineral resources, terrain features, etc.
      • Natural landscape
        • Helps shape—but does not dictate—how people live
    • Cultural attributes
      • Language, religion, industries, food, music, etc.
      • Cultural landscape
        • Visible imprint of human activity
  • 15. Attributes of Place are Always Changing
    • The physical environment undergoes continuous and pronounced change
    • Humans alter the environments they occupy
      • Pace of change has accelerated
        • Built landscape has increasingly replaced natural landscape
    • Places are the present result of past operation of distinctive physical and cultural processes
  • 16. Interrelations Between Places
    • Spatial interaction
      • Movement between places
    • Accessibility
      • Relative ease with which a destination may be reached
    • Connectivity
      • All the ways places are connected
    • Spatial diffusion
      • Dispersion from a center of origin to more distant points
    • Globalization
      • Increasing interconnection of all parts of the world
  • 17. Place Similarity and Regions
    • No two places on earth can be exactly the same
    • The natural and cultural characteristics of places show patterns of similarity in some areas
    • Regions
      • Earth areas that display significant elements of internal uniformity and external differences from surrounding territories
      • Used to classify the complex reality of the earth’s surface into manageable pieces
  • 18. Types of Regions
    • Formal (uniform) regions
      • Uniformity in one or a limited combination of physical or cultural features
    • Functional (nodal) regions
      • A spatial system with interdependent parts that operate as an organizational unit
    • Perceptual (vernacular/popular) regions
      • Exist in the perceptions of their inhabitants and the general society
      • Reflect feelings and images rather than objective data
  • 19. Geography’s Themes and Standards
    • Five fundamental themes
      • Location
      • Place
      • Relationships within places
      • Movement
      • Regions
  • 20. Geography’s Themes and Standards
    • National Geography Standards
      • The world in spatial terms
      • Places and regions
      • Physical systems
      • Human systems
      • Environment and society
      • The uses of geography
  • 21. Organization of This Book
    • Four traditions
      • Earth science tradition
        • Identified with physical geography in general
      • Culture-environment tradition
        • Identified with population, cultural, political, and behavioral geography
      • Locational (or spatial) tradition
        • Identified with economic, urban, and environmental geography
      • Area analysis (or regional) tradition
        • Regional geography

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