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Booming Bhutan

Booming Bhutan | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
Long impoverished and isolated, tiny Bhutan is finally booming. This onetime absolute monarchy has also made important democratic reforms and major improvements in quality of life.

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, February 6, 2013 10:56 AM

Located on the southern edge of the Himalayas, Bhutan's rugged topography is key to it's economic strategy to modernize this lightly populated, less developed mountain kingdom.  Bhutan is harnessing hydroelectric energy and selling it to India, which accounts for 20% of the GDP. Today Bhutan is one the five fastest growing economies in the world.  However, the economic developed is highly uneven; 40% of the population is still engaged in subsistence farming on the limited arable land showing that there are still substantial development issues ahead.

 

Tags: South Asia, development, economic, rural, Bhutan.

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Mongolia's Nomads

Mongolia's Nomads | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

Through his Vanishing Cultures Project photographer Taylor Weidman documents threatened ways of life.  About his work in Mongolia, he states: "Mongolian pastoral herders make up one of the world's largest remaining nomadic cultures. For millennia they have lived on the steppes, grazing their livestock on the lush grasslands. But today, their traditional way of life is at risk on multiple fronts. Alongside a rapidly changing economic landscape, climate change and desertification are also threatening nomadic life, killing both herds and grazing land."


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, January 2, 2013 12:17 PM

In times of ecological hardships and global economic restructuring, many children of nomadic herders are seeking employment out of the rural areas and in the urban environment.  The cultural change that this represents is for Mongolia enormous and is captured wonderfully in this photo gallery.  Pictured above are the ger (yurt) camps that ring the capital city Ulaanbaatar.  Ulaanbaatar houses a permanent population of displaced nomads. During the winter, Ulaanbaatar is the second most air-polluted capital in the world due largely to coal burning.


Tags: Mongolia, images, indigenous, culture, globalization.  

Adrian Bahan (MNPS)'s curator insight, March 12, 2013 6:44 PM

What factors are threatening pastoral herders way of life? Why?

Cam E's curator insight, April 8, 11:45 AM

Time for more pictures, my favorite part of scooping. Mongolia is almost entirely forgotten in US education, to the point where many of the people I know aren't even sure if there's a government at all. My favorite part of these pictures comes from the fusion of technology and tradition though. We see traditional housing and boys carrying water to their homes, and then a flat screen television in the makeshift house. Motorcycles are used to herd animals, and solar polar is used to power cell phones for the nomads. What I think is important here among other things is the idea that humanity has potentially reached a point where we cannot go backwards tech-wise. The dark ages in Europe saw knowledge being lost, and there are claims that humanity will wipe out its own tech in a great war, but now that we have the knowledge and ability to use solar panels and automobiles, I don't believe we'll ever lose them as a species.

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"The Farmer"

And on the eighth day, God looked down on his planned paradise and said, "I need a caretaker." So God made a farmer. God said, "I need somebody willing to ge...

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, February 4, 2013 9:29 AM

This Super Bowl commercial for trucks also doubles as a tribute to a rural America of yesteryear in general, and for farmers more specifically.  While some may object to the overtly religious references of video, I feel that it reflects the cultural ethos of the Midwest, but more importantly, the market research shows that this religious appeal would resonate with the truck-purchasing demographic that this commercial is trying to influence.  This commercial was cleverly critiqued in this video, "See God made a (Latino) Farmer" and in this irreverant parody.  


Tags: agriculture, labor, rural, unit 5 agriculture.

Ann-Laure Liéval's curator insight, February 6, 2013 1:04 PM

Religion et société aux EU: un document introductif pour le chapitre, pub du Superbowl 2013, à destination d'un public ciblé... 

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Food Machine

Food Machine | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

UPDATE: The PBS episode "Food Machine" premiered on April 11th, 2012 on the series "America Revealed."  Now the episode is available online. 

 

"Over the past century, an American industrial revolution has given rise to the biggest, most productive food machine the world has ever known.  In this episode, host Yul Kwon explores how this machine feeds nearly 300 million Americans every day. He discovers engineering marvels we’ve created by putting nature to work and takes a look at the costs of our insatiable appetite on our health and environment.  For the first time in human history, less than 2% of the population can feed the other 98%." 


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Adrian Bahan (MNPS)'s curator insight, March 7, 2013 8:46 PM

This is a great video covering our industrial agricultural complex

Matthew DiLuglio's curator insight, November 27, 2013 5:13 PM

The Industrial Revolution really changed things, but it is hardly an improvement, because so many people are without the benefits of the rich percentage.  People's roles are becoming solid components that are entirely replacable and part of the machine rather than becoming creative- and by creative, I don't just mean artsy.  I think that the Research and Development part of any machine entity is the part that allows it to adapt and modify in order to change for the better and the greater good.  I look at humans as an alien species inhabiting a planet, and I could make the analogy to a college fraternity.   The planet is a mess, people try to make a buck off each other at every given opportunity, and I particularly dislike that the rich people band together like frat brothers, instead of giving less-priveledged persons the opportunity to attain equal status.  I don't think like everyone else, but I do make efforts to partake in realistic activism to cause change for the betterment of all beings- human or not.  I do believe in predestination, and that everything around us is a material and spiritual echo from the dawn of creation, but I also believe that the flaws present today will disappear tomorrow through courses of events where chosen people will alter the formation of the future, for the benefit of all beings.  Right now, with people undertipping pizza delivery men, and not donating the optional dollar at stop and shop, it is the flawed 'today' phase of the timeline, but the Industrial Revolution has made it easier for society to embrace component roles, however replacable or expendable, and that in the end will achieve greater contentment and universal success.