AP Human Geography Culture Unit
Flashcards with vocabulary and themes from the culture unit.
Terms in this set (40)
What is Culture?
Derives from the Latin cultus, meaning "to care about."
Dates back to Enlightenment, when culture referred to a variety of human endeavors such as agriculture.
Currently defined as all the ideas, practices, and material objects associated with a particular group of people.
Cultural geographers study how cultures vary over space.
Specific customs that are part of everyday life, including language, religion, ethnicity, social institutions, and aspects of popular culture.
All cultural traits have hearths, or places of origin.
Cultural traits expanding broadly through processes of diffusion, adoption, and assimilation.
Group of traits that define a particular culture.
Artifacts comprise the technological subsystem of culture; consisting of material objects necessary for meeting basic needs such as tools.
Mentifacts comprise the ideological subsystem of culture; including ideas, beliefs, and knowledge, and how these things are communicated.
Sociofacts comprise the technological subsystem of culture; consisting of material objects necessary for meeting basic needs such as tools.
Environmental determinists claim that cultural traits are formed and controlled by environmental conditions.
Certain types of people, who come from cultures that arose in certain physical environments, may be smarter, more attractive, or more able to govern themselves as a result.
In possibilism, different environmental conditions offer both restraints and opportunities to people living in various regions.
People control their own destinies and deal with various environmental factors in ways that are dynamic and contingent and that unfold unpredictably over history.
Process by which an idea or innovation is transmitted from one individual or group across space.
Relocation diffusion involves spread as a result of physical movement to a new place.
Expansion diffusion typically involves spread of an innovation through communication.
Refers to adoption of cultural traits by one group under the influence of another.
May occur as a result of immigration, when immigrant populations take on the values, customs, and other cultural traits of the receiving society.
Also occurs as a result of colonization; many colonized cultures, either under force or voluntarily, adopted cultural traits of the colonizing group.
When integration of new arrivals into economic and cultural mainstream of a host society is complete.
The process whereby a minority group gradually adapts to the customs and attitudes of the prevailing culture and customs.
integration into a common cultural life through language, intermarriage, and shared experiences.
two-way full acceptance of cultural values and practices.
Once people of an outside culture rise to positions of political leadership, structural assimilation has taken place.
The development of a new cultural trait as a result of the fusion of two distinct but interacting cultures.
ex: Many ethnic cuisines in America are not eaten in their authentic form; they have been modified to be more pleasing to the typical American's palate.
Language may refer either to the specifically human capacity for acquiring and using complex systems of communication, or to a specific instance of such a system of complex communication.
Linguists estimate about 5000 remaining languages.
Africa and Asia being most linguistically diverse.
A collection of many languages, all of which came from the same original tongue, but have different characteristics.
Indo-European Language Family
The language family tree is broken down first into major languages. Each of these languages is an ancestor to other languages, such as Latin. Latin has several offspring including French, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish, among others. English descends from the Low German branch of Germanic offspring.
Each language family has a similarly complex tree encompassing a wide variety of both current extinct languages.
A set of languages with relatively recent common origin and many similar characteristics.
Ex: Spanish and Italian are both part of Romance language group; they are both derived from Latin, they have many related words, and they contain similar grammatical structures.
Geography distinct versions of a single language that vary somewhat from parent form.
Pidgins and Creoles
When two groups of people with different languages meet, a new language with some characteristics of each may result.
If a pidgin evolves to the point of being the primary language of the people who speak it, it becomes a creole.
Development of alphabets and resulting literary traditions resulted in dominance of particular languages and cultures across the globe.
When European nations had colonial power over African and South American countries, they easily imposed their languages on native populations because of well-established alphabets, whereas most native tongues were passed along verbally.
After decolonization, most European languages remained dominant in former colonies.
An extremely simple language that combines aspects of two or more complex languages, usually for purpose of trade or business.
Language in which all government business occurs.
Some countries have multiple official languages.
Multilingual states (Canada- French speaking Quebec and English speaking majority of Canadian population).
English as the Global Language
400 million native speakers, 400 million who speak it as a second language, and 750 million who speak it with reasonable competence.
Official language in 60 countries.
Considered the language of internet, science, and increasingly, language of advertising.
Occurs when a language is no longer in use by any living people.
Globalization has led to premature extinction of many languages.
Causes loss of tremendous amount of history and knowledge.
Countering Language Extinction
Movements have arisen to revive native languages.
The names different cultures give to various features of the earth including settlements, terrain features, streams, and other land features.
Reveals interesting aspects of the spatial patterns of different languages and dialects.
Religion: What is it?
A set of teachings that imply a value system, include some notion of the sacred, and include ideas about the place of human beings in the universe.
Religion is a system of beliefs that govern the way many people lead their lives.
Religion provides insight into population growth, international politics, and design and structure of cities.
Geographic Distribution of World's Major Religions
Hinduism- Indian subcontinent
Islam- Middle East, North Africa, South Pacific/SE Asia
Christianity- Australia, Europe, North/South America
Buddhism- South Asia
Traditional/Shamanist: Sub-Saharan Africa and parts of South America.
Universalizing- claim global applicability and actively seek converts.
Local-specific to an area; some are ethnic like Hinduism and Judaism, others are tribal and often polytheistic.
Monotheistic vs Polytheistic
Monotheistic- Belief in one deity or God
Polytheistic- Belief in more than one deity or God.
Global vs Ethnic religions
Global- numerous members, widespread, doctrines have global appeal.
Hinduism and Judaism are ethnic religions- appeal to small groups of people living in a single region with a common heritage.
Local religion types associated with particular places.
Shamanism- single person fulfills roles of priest, counselor, and physician and claims a conduit to the supernatural world.
Animism- most prevalent in Africa and the Americas; animists see the world as being infused with spiritual and supernatural powers.
World's most widespread religion with two billion believers.
Monotheistic religion with origins in Judaism.
Eastern Orthodox, Protestant, and Roman Catholic are major categories.
Christian denominations in US
Southern States- "Baptist Belt"
Upper Midwest- Lutheran
Spanish Catholicism- Arizona, New Mexico, Texas.
Catholicism- Northeastern States
West- Mixed religions
One billion members worldwide
Centered in Middle East, North Africa, but is found throughout the world.
Monotheistic religion stemming form Judaism, based on belief that there is one god, Allah, and that Muhammed was Allah's prophet.
Mecca, Saudi Arabia- birthplace of Muhammed and the base for the nation of Islam.