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Human Geography Chapter 1: This Is Geography
Terms in this set (100)
The study of where things are found on Earth's surface and the reasons for their locations. Based on two Greek words: geo means "Earth" and graphy means "to write". Human geography focuses on two main features of human behavior-culture and economy. Unlike historians, geographers are able to travel to locations and study Earth's surface whereas a historian cannot time travel.
A specific point on Earth, distinguished by a particular characteristic. Every one of these occupies a unique location, or position, on Earth's surface. One of two basic concepts geographers use to explain why everywhere is unique.
An area of Earth defined by one or more distinctive characteristics. Geographers divide the world into a number of these. Can be applied to any area larger than a point and smaller than the entire planet. Gains uniqueness from possessing not a single human or environmental feature but a combination of them. One of two basic concepts geographers use to explain why everywhere is unique.
The relationship between the portion of Earth being studied and Earth as a whole. Geographers study a variety of these, from local to global. One of three basic concepts that explain why different locations are interrelated.
The physical gap or interval between two objects. Geographers observe that many objects are distributed across it in a regular manner, for discernible reasons. One of three basic concepts that explain why different locations are interrelated.
The relationships among people and objects across the barrier of space. Geographers are concerned with the various means by which these occur. One of three basic concepts that explain why different locations are interrelated.
A two-dimensional or flat-scale model of Earth's surface, or a portion of it. Geography's most important tool for thinking spatially about the distribution of features across Earth. It serves two purposes:
-As a reference tool. Helps us find the shortest route between two places and to avoid getting lost along the way.
-As a communications tool. Often the best means for depicting the distribution of human activities or physical features, as well as for thinking about reasons underlying a distribution.
The science of making maps. Map-makers are assisted by computers and satellite imagery. One of the earliest surviving maps depicts the town of Çatalhöyük in Turkey, dating back to 6200 B.C.E.
A Roman geographer-astronomer who wrote an eight-volume Geographia, codified basic principles of mapmaking, and prepared numerous maps that were not improved upon for more than 1,000 years.
A German cartographer who was credited with producing the first map to use the label "America"; he wrote on the map "from Amerigo the discoverer . . . as if it were the land of Americus, thus America"
Geographic Information Science (GIScience)
The analysis of data about Earth acquired through satellite and other electronic information technologies.
Geographic Information System (GIS)
A computer system that captures, stores, queries, and displays geographic data. It produces maps that are more accurate and attractive than those drawn by hand, with some of its data coming from photos. It helps geographers create more accurate and complex maps and measure changes over time in the characteristics of places.
The science of taking measurements of Earth's surface from photographs. Corporations and governments use this and remote sensing to create high-quality 3D virtual representations of portions of Earth. These maps can depict the distribution of a wide variety of urban and rural features.
The acquisition of data about Earth's surface from a satellite orbiting Earth or from other long-distance methods. At any moment, an aerial sensor attached to a satellite, airplane, or drone may be recording the image of a tiny area on Earth's surface.
Global Positioning System (GPS)
A system that determines the precise position of something on Earth through a series of satellites, tracking stations, and receivers. Most commonly used for navigation; it provides us with a wealth of information about the specific place on Earth we currently occupy.
Identification and storage of a piece of information by its precise latitude and longitude coordinates. It has led to concerns about privacy.
Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI)
The creation and dissemination of geographic data contributed voluntarily and for free by individuals. An example of citizen science.
Scientific research by amateur scientists.
Participatory GIS (PGIS)
Community-based mapping, representing local knowledge and information.
A map that overlays data from one source on top of a map provided by a mapping service. This term comes from the hip hop practice of mixing two or more songs.
Application Programming Interface (API)
The language that links a database such as an address list with software such as mapping software. It allows individuals to create mashups on their personal computers because mapping services provide access to this.
A personal representation of a portion of Earth's surface. A mental map depicts what an individual knows about a place, and it contains personal impressions of what is in the place and where the place is located.
The relationship between the size of an object on a map and the size of the actual feature on Earth's surface.
The numerical relationship between distances on the map and Earth's surface. One of the three ways map scale is presented.
A scale that describes the relationship between map and Earth distances in words. One of the three ways map scale is presented.
A scale that usually consists of a bar line marked to show distance on Earth's surface. One of the three ways map scale is presented.
The scientific method of transferring locations on Earth's surface to a flat map. A response to the difficulty posed from translating Earth's spherical shape into 2D.
A consequence of projection that can occur when making maps, usually those of the entire world. Four types of this can result:
-The shape of an area can be distorted, so that it appears more elongated or squat than in reality.
-The distance between two points may become increased or decreased.
-The relative size of different areas may be altered, so that one area may appear larger than another on a map but is in reality smaller.
-The direction from one place to another can be distorted.
A system of imaginary arcs drawn in a grid pattern on Earth's surface. It plays an important role in telling time.
An arc drawn on a map between the North and South poles.
The numbering system used to indicate the location of meridians drawn on a globe and measuring distance east and west of the prime meridian (0°). Inability to measure this used to be the greatest obstacle to exploration and discovery for many centuries.
A circle drawn around the globe parallel to the equator and at right angles to the meridians.
The numbering system used to indicate the location of parallels drawn on a globe and measuring distance north and south of tge equator (0°).
The meridian, designated as 0° longitude, that passes through the Royal Observatory at Greenwich, England. Shows how longitude is a human creation. It only runs through Greenwich because England was the world's most powerful country when longitude was first accurately measured.
An English clockmaker, and the first person to measure longitude accurately. He invented the first portable clock that could keep accurate time on a ship because it did not have a pendulum.
A map that connects places of a particular values by lines.
Dot Distribution Map
A map that depicts data that consists of discrete observations. Each dot represents a predetermined number of observations, which could be one or many.
A map in which areas are shaded or patterned in proportion to the measurement of the variable.
Graduated Symbol Map
A map that displays symbols that change in size according to the value of the variable. A higher value is typically represented by a larger symbol.
A map in which the projection and scale are distorted in order to convey the information of a variable.
Sense of Place
A feeling for the features that contribute to the distinctiveness of a particular spot on Earth. This includes a hometown, vacation destination, or part of a country.
The position of anything on Earth's surface. Geographers consider three ways to identify this:
The name given to a portion of Earth's surface. A place may be named for a person, its founder, or a famous person with no connection to the community. One of the ways that geographers describe the location of a place.
The physical character of a place. The combination of physical features gives each place a distinctive character. These factors often have determined the selection of locations for settlements, but these traits can also be modified by humans. One of the ways that geographers describe the location of a place.
Situation, Relative Location
The location of a place relative to another place. A valuable way to indicate location for two reasons:
-Finding an unfamiliar place.
-Understanding the importance of a place.
Description of the position of a place in a way that never changes, such as geographic coordinates of latitude and longitude.
An approach to geography that emphasizes the relationships among social and physical phenomena in a particular study area. Achieved through a combination of cultural features such as language and religion, economic features such as agriculture and industry, and physical features such as climate and vegetation. "Culture is the agent, the natural area is the medium, the cultural landscape is the result."
Formal Region, Uniform Region
An area in which most people share in one or more distinctive characteristics. This characteristic could be a cultural value such as a common language, an economic activity such as production of a particular crop, or an environmental property such as climate. One of three types of regions.
Functional Region, Nodal Region
An area organized around a node or focal point. The chosen characteristic dominates at a central focus or node and diminishes in importance outward. People and activities may be attracted to the node, and information may flow from the node to the surrounding area.
Vernacular Region, Perceptual Region
An area that people believe exists as part of their cultural identity. Such regions emerge from people's informal sense of place rather than from scientific models developed through geographic thought.
The body of customary beliefs, material traits, and social forms that together constitutes the distinct tradition of a group of people. Geographers distinguish groups of people according to important cultural characteristics, describe where particular cultural groups are distributed, and offer reasons to explain the observed distribution. The production of material wealth also interests geographers.
The relationship between the distribution of one feature and the distribution of another feature. This is strong if two features have very similar distributions, and weak if two features have very different distributions.
Actions or processes that involve the entire world and result in making something worldwide in scope. This means that the scale of the world is shrinking—not literally in size, of course, but in the ability of a person, an object, or an idea to interact with a person, an object, or an idea in another place. Despite this, cultural differences continue to persist and blossom in many places.
A company that conducts research, operates factories, and sells products in many countries, not just where its headquarters or shareholders are located. Every place in the world plays a role in the global economy, which is recognized by these corporations. They decide where to produce things in response to characteristics of the local labor force, such as level of skills, prevailing wage rates, and attitudes toward unions.
The arrangement of something across Earth's surface. Geographers wish to understand why and how such spatial arrangements came to be when observing the arrangements of people and activities found in space.
The frequency with which something exists within a given unit of area. This involves two measures: the number of a feature and the size of the land area. One of three main properties of features as they are distributed across Earth.
The extent of a feature's spread over a given area. If the objects in an area are close together, they are clustered; if relatively far apart, they are dispersed. Not the same as density. One of three main properties of features as they are distributed across Earth.
The geometric or regular arrangement of something in a particular area.
A geographic approach that examines how the powerful in a society dominate, or seek to control, less powerful groups, how the dominated groups occupy space, and confrontations that result from the domination. These geographers understand space as the product of ideologies or value systems of ruling elites.
An approach to human geography that emphasizes the different ways that individuals form ideas about place and give those places symbolic meanings. For example, Castro is seen as a LGBTQ+ hotspot by that community.
An approach to human geography that emphasizes the importance of understanding the psychological basis for individual human actions in space. Distinctive spatial patterns by gender, ethnicity, and sexual orientation are constructed by the attitudes and actions of cultural groups as well as the larger society.
The increasing gap in economic conditions between core and peripheral regions as a result of the globalization of the economy. The global economy has produced greater disparities than in the past between the levels of wealth and well-being enjoyed by people in the core and in the periphery.
The individual's sense of being male or female. Patterns in space vary according to this. Geographers study these cultural traits because they are important in explaining why people sort themselves out in space and move across the landscape in distinctive ways. Its inequality has yielded varying distribution for geographers.
An idea that has been created and widely accepted by the people in a society.
Ethnic & Racial Identity
Both social constructs, a person's ethnicity is tied to a particular place, whereas race is a social construct built around perception of a physiological trait, such as skin color. For geographers, concern and deep respect for cultural diversity is not merely a politically correct expediency; it lies at the heart of geography's understanding of space.
The process by which a feature spreads from one place to another over time. For a person, an object, or an idea to have interaction with persons, objects, or ideas in other regions, this must occur.
A place from which an innovation originates. Emerges if a cultural group is willing to try something new, has the resources to compensate the innovation, and the ability to achieve the idea.
The spread of a feature or trend through bodily movement of people from one place to another. When people move, they carry with them their culture, including language, religion, and ethnicity.
The spread of a feature or trend among people from one area to another in an additive process.
The spread of a feature or trend from one key person or node of authority or power to other persons or places. It may result from the spread of ideas from political leaders, socially elite people, or other important persons to others in the community. One of three processes that cause expansion diffusion.
The rapid, widespread diffusion of a feature or trend throughout a population. Spreads without regard for hierarchy and without permanent relocation of people. One of three processes that cause expansion diffusion.
Contagious diffusion through the Internet or social media.
The spread of an underlying principle even though a characteristic itself apparently fails to diffuse. One of three processes that cause expansion diffusion.
The diminished importance and eventual disappearance of a phenomenon with increasing distance from its origin. In the contemporary world, this is much less severe because connection between places takes much less time.
The reduction in the time it takes to diffuse something to a distant place as a result of improved communications and transportation systems.
A chain of communication that connects places.
The process by which a group's cultural features are altered to resemble those of another group. One of the results of connections between cultural groups.
The process of changes in culture that result from the meeting of two groups, each of which retains distinct cultural features. One of the results of connections between cultural groups.
The combining elements of two groups into a new cultural feature.
A substance in the environment that is useful to people, economically and technologically feasible to access, and socially acceptable to use. A substance is merely part of nature until a society has a use for it.
The use of Earth's renewable and nonrenewable natural resources in ways that do not constrain resource use in the future. This can be damaged through human actions:
-Humans deplete nonrenewable resources.
-Humans destroy otherwise renewable resources through pollution of air, water, and soil.
The sustainable management of a natural resource to meet human needs such as food, medicine, and recreation. Falls under the Environment Pillar.
The maintenance of resources in their present condition, with as little human impact as possible. Every plant and animal living on Earth has a right to exist and should be protected, regardless of the cost. It does not regard nature as a resource for human use. Falls under the Environment Pillar.
A system composed of living organisms.
A system composed of nonliving or inorganic matter.
An abiotic system. A thin layer of gases surrounding Earth.
An abiotic system. All of the water on and near Earth's surface.
An abiotic system. Earth's crust and a portion of upper mantle directly below the crust.
A biotic system. All living organisms on Earth, including plants and animals as well as microorganisms.
The long-term average weather condition at a particular location. This influences human activities because of their tolerance for extreme weathers, especially production of the food needed to survive.
A system developed by German climatologist Vladimir Köppen. This system divides the world into five main climate regions that are identified by the letters A through E as well as by names:
A: Tropical Climates
B: Dry Climates
C: Warm Mid-Latitude Climates
D: Cold Mid-Latitude Climates
E: Polar Climates
The study of Earth's landforms. Powerful forces deep within Earth bend and break the crust to form mountain chains and shape the crust to form continents and ocean basins. Helps to explain the distribution of people and the choice of economic activities at different locations.
A group of living organisms and the abiotic spheres with which they interact.
The scientific study of ecosystems. Scientists in this field study interrelationships between living organisms and the three abiotic environments as well as interrelationships among the various living organisms in the biosphere.
A geographic approach that emphasizes human-environment relationships.
A 19th and early 20th century approach to the study of geography which argued that the general laws sought by human geographers could be found in the physical sciences. Geography was therefore the study of how the physical environment caused human activities.
The theory that the physical environment may limit some human actions, but people have the ability to adjust to their environment. People can choose a course of action from many alternatives in the physical environment.
Land that the Dutch have created by draining water from an area. First created in the 13th century, they were constructed primarily by private developers in the 16th and 17th centuries and by the government during the past 200 years.
Coordinated Universal Time (UTC)
Informally Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). The time in the zone encompassing the prime meridian, or 0° longitude. The master reference time for all points on Earth.
International Date Line
An arc that for the most part follows 180° longitude. When it is crossed heading east (toward America), the clock moves back 24 hours, or one entire day. When it is crossed heading west (toward Asia), the calendar moves ahead one day.
THIS SET IS OFTEN IN FOLDERS WITH...
Human Geography Chapter 2: Population & Health
Human Geography Chapter 3: Migration
Human Geography Chapter 4: Culture & Social Media
Human Geography Chapter 5: Languages
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