Unit 3 (Cultural Geography)
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Unit 3 (Cultural Geography)
Folk and Popular, Language, Ethnicity, and Religion
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How a Buddhist shrine transformed a neighborhood

How a Buddhist shrine transformed a neighborhood | Unit 3 (Cultural Geography) | Scoop.it

"Sometimes, rehabilitating a rough neighborhood is a tough process. But in one West Coast American city, it was as simple as adding a Buddha statue.  Since the statue's installation, a street corner has been transformed from a notorious eyesore to a daily prayer spot for local Vietnamese Buddhists.  For this Geo Quiz, we're looking for the city where this shrine is located — can you name it?"


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, December 9, 2014 7:51 AM

This podcast is a great glimpse into an urban transformation that took place without any central planning nor can the changes be classified as gentrification. 


Tags: neighborhood, place, culture, economic, urban.

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Inside Mecca

For over 1400 years, Mecca has been one of the most important cities in the Arabian Peninsula. By the middle of the 6th century, there were three major settl...

 

As the heart of Islam, Mecca brings in pilgrims from around the world.  This documentary gives a great overview of the historical, spiritual and cultural reasons why this is sacred space to over one billion Muslims.  Additionally, this documentary contains an analysis of the logistics that are a part of the Hajj.  

 

Tags: Islam, tourism, place, transportation, religion, Middle East, culture. 

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Linguistic Geography: My Fair Lady

This is a most decidedly dated reference for pop culture, but a great movie for making explicit the idea that the way we speak is connected to where we've lived (also a good clip to show class differences as well as gender norms). The clip highlights many principles and patterns for understanding the geography of languages.

 

Tags: Language, class, gender, culture, historical, London, unit 3 culture and place.

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Where Does the South Begin?

Where Does the South Begin? | Unit 3 (Cultural Geography) | Scoop.it
Roads? Religion? Accent? Food? Which factor dictates where the North ends?

 

This is a great intellectual expercise to help student think about regions and how we define them.  The article can help also inform some of their thinking since one of the main problems for students in drawing regional boundaries is a lack of place-based knowledge.   

 

Tags: regions, USA.


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Matthew DiLuglio's curator insight, October 12, 2013 6:49 PM

Borders... the first thing I think of was a giant bookstore near my hometown... it now ceases to exist, having been replaced by Barnes and Nobel...  As for the political organization of space, I could apply this situation and laugh.  Borders will cease to be, and they will be called after people's last names!  I think this has already happened, when people unite together in countries such as the USA- although borders are specific, the general federal laws and many policies still apply in all states... generally. And people's names are often the namesakes of places.  I don't like the idea of borders, though, it seems like a bunch of warmongers trying to get ahead in a world where they can't truly cheat death, so they cheat other people of land that may have been decreed in ancient documents as property of their ancestors, or even in accordance with the righteousness of the universe and what should be alloted to whom.  Ownership is a concept of denial, because no one can truly own anything, not even our bodies, which contain trillions of infinite universes the size of the large one around us that we commonly refer to.  Borders are relative, and will likely become recognized as obsolete.  I know this was abstract, but it's my thoughts on the topic.

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Forget Midwest. We Are North: Repositioning Minnesota's National Identity for the 21st Century

Forget Midwest. We Are North: Repositioning Minnesota's National Identity for the 21st Century | Unit 3 (Cultural Geography) | Scoop.it

“The Midwest is this big nebulous part of the country and it's kind of what's left over after all the other regions of the country are defined. Those regions have much stronger identities if you think of the East Coast or maybe New England or the Pacific Northwest or certainly the South. The Midwest is kind of the catchall for what's left.  We [Minnesota] should be called the North.”


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, December 9, 2014 1:48 PM

Whether I agree or not with the ideas being discussed, I simply love that this discussion is taking place and how intensely geographical the ideas and evidences being brought forward are.  


Questions to Ponder: So what region do you live in?  What defines that region?  Are there other regions that you can claim to be a part of also?  How would you divide the United States into various regions?  How come?


Tagsplaceregions, culture

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Mass Sacrifice Found Near Aztec Temple

Mass Sacrifice Found Near Aztec Temple | Unit 3 (Cultural Geography) | Scoop.it

Below street level in Mexico City, archaeologists have found a jumble of bones dating to the 1480s.

 

In the 1970s, construction workers unearthed numerous archaeological finds as the subway was being constructed.  The Mexican government decided to clear the several block of old colonial buildings to reveal the Templo Mayor, the ancient Aztec religious center.  Not coincidentally, the Spaniards built their religious center in the same place.  During the colonial era, the indigenous residents who spoke Spanish in Mexico City still referred to this portion of the city as la pirámide.  Today more finds such as this one are continuing to help us piece together the past of this immensely rich, multi-layered place filled with symbolic value. 

 

Tags: Mexico, LatinAmerica, historical, images, National Geographic, colonialism, place and culture.


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Hector Alonzo's curator insight, October 26, 2014 10:00 PM

While the Aztec' civilization has been gone for a very long time, there are still traces of it resurfacing today. With the uncovering of the bones, it shows that the Aztec temple was very much in the heart of Mexico City has still has more secrets to uncover

Bob Beaven's curator insight, February 5, 2015 2:39 PM

This article shows just how varied the cultural landscape of Mexico is.  Unlike the Native populations in the US, the Aztecs had a large, flourishing civilization that was described by the first conquistadors "to match the glory of any major city in Europe."  When the Spanish eventually conquered the Aztec Civilization, they built right on top of the ruins of the old Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan.  The way that Mexico City is layered right on top of the old Aztec city, means that many human remains and ancient buildings are buried right below the modern city.  This is what makes Mexico City different than any city in the United States or Canada, the cities in these two countries were not built over massive cities that pre-dated them.

Jared Medeiros's curator insight, February 11, 2015 10:07 PM

This seems to be quite a large sacrifice that was discovered. And while it may be just that, it seems more like a mass execution, possibly performed by the Spanish when they battled with the Aztecs and put at the foot near the Aztec temple to send a message that their God could not save them.  If it is a sacrifice, its a pretty large one.

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61 Amazing Manhole Covers from Japan

61 Amazing Manhole Covers from Japan | Unit 3 (Cultural Geography) | Scoop.it

Manhole covers are ubiquitous in the modern urban fabric; they are typically drab and purely utilitarian.  In Japan, municipalities take pride in the this ordinary piece of the landscape and convert them into extraordinary works of art that reflect the local people, place and culture. 

 

Tags: book review, landscape, art, urban, culture, place, EastAsia.

 


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Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, April 14, 2014 6:00 PM

This is a great take on art and the ways of celebrating Japan with touches of personal findings and ideas. These manhole covers are cheery and reflect a piece of Japan that not only tell stories, but embrace history.

Kaitlin Young's curator insight, December 12, 2014 3:17 PM

While many would consider it silly to turn something as ordinary as manhole covers into pieces of art, I believe that it is an amazing way to represent the culture of a place. Different townships and neighborhoods in Japan have distinct designs that relate to that place. This acts as an artistic expression of the characteristics of that place, since the designs are often chosen and designed by the people of that place. Some covers show historical events, animals, and even religious symbolism. I would love to flip through the book and try to imagine why each place chose each design.