Geography 400
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Typhoon Haiyan Before & After

Typhoon Haiyan Before & After | Geography 400 |
View interactive before and after images showing the devastation Typhoon Haiyan has caused in Tacloban City, Philippines.

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This is a very cool interactive resource that can be used to show the devastation from Typhoon Haiyan in Tacloban City, Philippines.  It shows the before and after images of the city and you can see that on the coastline, boats and coastal homes are gone.

megan b clement's comment, December 15, 2013 11:35 PM
Looking upfront at the before and after the typhoon hit the Philipines right on the coast line. The coast was completly wiped out and destructed it looked as though nothing was ever there. Not only were homes and businesses destructed but over 2500 people were killed in this natural disaster.
Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 19, 10:50 PM

By viewing the before and after images, one can see how destructive this typhoon was. Almost every building was absolutely destroyed and the damage looks overwhelming. Disaster's such as this can really set a country back, as the damage appears to be costly. Although sad to look at, these images were informational. 

Tracy Galvin's curator insight, May 3, 7:01 PM

A great set of photos to show the great destructive force of a storm on coastlines. The Philippines are a bunch of small islands made up of primarily coastlines so this typhoon destroyed huge amounts of the country.

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Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

Aborigines threaten to shut Uluru

Aborigines threaten to shut Uluru | Geography 400 |
Aboriginal leaders threaten to ban tourists from a top Australian landmark in protest at "racist" government policies.

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This is an interesting BBC news source and even though it is from 2008, it is still important to the topic of initiating government policies, especially those that may have a racial component.  Aborigines threatened to shut  down access to the Australian landmark, Uluru (previously named Ayer's Rock by European explorers).  Australian government leaders imposed laws banning alcohol and pornography from Aborigines in hopes to lower the incidents of child abuse.  While child abuse is a more prevalent issue among indigenous groups rather than those who are not Aborigines, I do not think it is fair to impose particular bans against certain groups.  Child abuse is most likely an issue among Australians other than Aborigines, but just because it might be more prevalent among Aborigines, it is not a reason to punish one group of people and not all.

Meagan Harpin's curator insight, October 23, 2013 12:50 PM

This is a very strange article. After police and troops were sent into more than 70 indigenous communities after a report of wide spread child abuse tribal leaders threatened to ban tourists from being allowed to climb Uluru. TO me this sounds like they are trying to hid what is really going on in their communities. 

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, April 23, 5:35 PM

 Australia is one of my most racially discriminated places in the world because of this there are alot of factors that play into these problems. "The so-called "intervention" in the Northern Territory was introduced by former Prime Minster John Howard's conservative government.Chronic disadvantage had led to Aboriginal life expectancy being 17 years below that of other Australians."

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 8:15 PM

This article points out the political and cultural geography of Australia.  The legislation that the indigenous people sees as raciest and painting a picture of them as bad people may lead to their closing off on of Australia’s tourist attractions.

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Australia's tough anti-gang laws target tattooists

Australia's tough anti-gang laws target tattooists | Geography 400 |
In Sydney's trendy eastern suburbs, tattoo parlors are almost as ubiquitous as hairdressers.
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

While looking for interesting news sources relating to Australia, I came across this source that reveals that many tattoo artists are involved gang members.  I find this to be interesting because for some reason I would never associate gang activity with Australia.  Surprisingly to me, there are very tough anti-gang laws that now specfically target tattoo artists.  Some of these gangs are the same as those that exist in the United States, such as the Hells Angels.  How do these gangs spread globally?  This is a rather strange example of globalization.

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Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!


Maldives | Geography 400 |

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

The Maldives is an interesting country located in the Indian Ocean.  It was not originally made up of the 1200 islands that it has now.  Many of those islands are uninhabited and miniscule on a map.  The country is dominated by tourism which is important for the country.  What is also important to the country is its geographical future.  Many of the islands might vanish in years to come because of rising sea levels.  New islands can form as well as so many already have.  The future of this country merely relies on what is happening underwater.

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 11, 4:19 AM

The Maldives are an extremely interesting case of physical geography. They are made of coral and sands which the oceans have deposited on the coral skeleton of the islands. The ringed shape of the islands suggests there was once something in the center of the them which either receded into the ocean or eroded away leaving only the hardened coral rings behind.


Economically, the fairly unique nature of these tropical islands makes them an excellent tourist destination and Maldives has a significant tourist industry. Unfortunately, the unique physical geography of the islands makes them extremely vulnerable to tsunami and rising sea levels. If global warming raises the ocean levels a few feet, the majority of the islands will be flooded permanently.

Tracy Galvin's curator insight, May 3, 6:51 PM

Although they are a country that relies on tourism for their economy, they still limit the number of tourists in respect for the Muslim population of the islands. Unfortunately, geology of the islands puts them in danger of rising sea levels without much of a solution for protection.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 8:48 PM

Boy would I love to visit the Maldives. What an interesting and beautiful island it is.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

Mixing Past And Present In Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea, once home to cannibals, still has an exotic aura. The local tourist economy caters to those notions, and visitors may see a hybrid of the traditional and the modern.


This story is an intriguing blend--we see traditional cultures engaging in the global economy. They have created two villages: a traditional one designed for tourism filled with emblems of their folk cultures, and another one where people work, live eat and play with various markers of outside cultural and technological influence.


"Tourists are taking pictures. They don't want to take pictures of those who are in Western clothes.  People who are in Western clothes are not allowed to get close to people who are dressed up in the local dressings."


Questions to Ponder: Which village do you see as the more "authentic" one? How can culture also be a commodity?


Tags: folk culture, tourism, indigenous, culture, economic, rural, historical, unit 3 culture, Oceania.

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This NPR audio source reveals two totally different lives in Papua New Guinea.  There is one side that caters to tourism by showing the "old" Papua New Guinea.  This village promotes tourism and it has tours that show old, sort of primitive traditions in Papua New Guinea.  It is still important to the natives because it does preserve their past culture.  The villagers feel that the world is becoming so westernized that they cannot go back to the old ways of traditions such as cannibalism, wearing little clothing, etc., but when tourists travel to this village, those are the things they want to see.  The man in the audio source then traveled to another village where he witnessed how people of Papua New Guinea actually live, which is westernized.  I think that both villages are authentic.  One village represents their past culture and traditions and origins which is still important, and the other village represents globalization and the changes that the people of Papua New Guinea adapt to.  Culture can be a commodity because people such as westerners buy into what they think a country's particular culture is, even though that culture existed centuries ago and the culture has drastically changed since.

Ana Cristina Gil's curator insight, November 6, 2013 7:47 PM

The more authentic village is the one with the folk culture the rural one, because they haven’t lost their traditions and their identity. Culture can be a also a commodity for example you have Papua New Guinea. People are intrigue on their way of living so they will pay to go see them. Places like Papua New Guinea attract a lot of tourist. A country with tourist is a country that is receiving money.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 8:18 PM

This pod cast shows the dichotomy of old and new.  The villagers earn a living being a living museum of their past culture.  But to do that they need to keep all modern influences away from the tourist village which leads to them living in a separate village nearby. 

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 26, 2:56 PM

The tourists visiting Papua New Guinea enjoy visiting the villages where people are supposedly living in the past. I am sure some visitors still believe these villagers are still cannibals. People years ago once came here and told the ancient villagers to abandon their culture and leave their religion behind. Today, tourists are visiting and paying to see these villagers living in the past.   

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

Unusual ways to avoid Jakarta's traffic

Unusual ways to avoid Jakarta's traffic | Geography 400 |
Jakarta's traffic is legendary and locals have now become experts at finding ways to get around the jams, with some even making money out of them.


The population of Indonesia is heavily concentrated on the island of Java, and the capital city of Jakarta faces a tremendous strain on it's transportation network.  This video show that resourceful people will find inventive ways to make an unworkable situation manageable. 

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

Because of the extreme traffic in Indonesia's capital city of Jakarta, people find interesting ways to manage the situation.  There is a law that requires cars traveling into the central business district to have three or more passengers.  The requirement aims to have as many people entering the district as possible but in a lesser amount of vehicles to hopefully reduce traffic.  Interestingly enough, people sort of "hitchhike" and go in people's cars to make the cars able to enter the business district and the people make money doing this although it is illegal.  Many people are finding other ways to manage the traffic situation in this growing city.  Some suggest that the city should invest in a public transportation network that cities such as Bangkok and Singapore have in order to lessen the vehicle traffic.  This video really shows how globalization and urbanization impacts particular cities that are growing larger and larger in population and industry everyday.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 18, 8:53 PM

Jakarta is faced with overpopulation and traffic problems. The government passed a law, which requires a vehicle to have passengers aboard, in the hopes of speeding up the traffic entering the city. However, some drivers are paying people to take a ride with them into the city to avoid the fines. In most areas throughout the world, passengers would be paying the driver for a ride, but in this city, it is different. The government should find another solution to fix the traffic issues. 

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 2:49 PM

This video was interesting.  It shows that with increased urbanization come the problem of increased traffic congestion.  Government that are growing need to be aware of this and build their cities accordingly to have transportation that can accommodate all the people swelling the city.

Paige Therien's curator insight, May 2, 2:51 PM

Indonesia's capital city, Jakarta, is located on the country's most heavily populated island of Java.  The city has seen an intense population explosion, and with is came more and more vehicles.  The roads are overcrowded and there is not enough public transportation.  People in Jakarta have had to adapt to the social environment that has been created.  Jockeys charge drivers for giving them rides into the center of the  city (you need to have three of more people in your car to do so).  Even if they did not need to go into the city, it is a way to make many, albeit illegal.  Cities, like Jakarta, are places where infrastructure and public transportation is needed most heavily, but it is the most difficult and expensive place to do so.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

BBC: Development-How bottles bring light to world's poorest

BBC: Development-How bottles bring light to world's poorest | Geography 400 |
A simple initiative in the Philippines is bringing a bit of brightness into the lives of the country's poorest people.


Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This is another source about the use of recycled soda bottles as light sources in the Philippines.  This idea amazes me because it shows what people are capable of doing to help themselves and others in impoverished places.  It is such a simple yet amazingly important initiative.

Elizabeth Allen's comment, December 7, 2012 12:44 PM
Wow, this is truly amazing to see how innovative cultures can be. While they cannot afford electricity due to the high prices, they still have found an inexpensive alternative. Now with the mimicked lighting, people in poor areas of the Phillipines can still go on with their daily living uninterrupted.
Michelle Carvajal's curator insight, December 11, 2012 8:51 PM

This is absolutely see how people think of new innovative ways to create simple gadgets that will serve as a source for them to live by. The fact that prices for certain services push people to find new ways of receiving the same service is sad but at the same time it stimulates people to try. I am fascinated at how much a person can do with their two hands. Very nice. - M. Carvajal

Seth Dixon's curator insight, August 25, 2013 9:20 PM

This clip is brimming with classroom potential.  Development is a key component to this clip, but it could also become a service learning project as students adopt a great project to help others in more difficult financial situations.  Learn more about the project at:

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Regional Geography!

Planting Rice


Feel free to mute the commentary...this video demonstrates the truly 'back-breaking' work that is a part of paddy rice farming. 

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This video shows the amount of work that goes into rice farming in Asian countries.  People of Asian countries heavily rely on rice as a staple in their diets.  These people take part in immense manual labor on small farms and farm rice for their own local consumption.  It is 'back-breaking' work and it shows what many people must do in order to get their food.  It is not as easy as driving down the street to the grocery store, as we take for granted in the United States and other nations.

Donald Dane's comment, December 10, 2013 10:20 AM
this video of Thailand shows just how different life styles are throughout the world. Americans for instance wouldn't be found dead doing this type of labor work. that goes to show just how shallow americans are and how incredible these people are for doing labor of this nature. planting rice is not only a life style they pick to do it is a life style they must do. with rice being Thailand's prime export and an ideal location for rice paddys this "job" isn't actually a job its a must do. these women spend hundreds of hours a week doing this.
Brett Sinica's curator insight, December 10, 2013 4:11 PM

When you look at Thailand from satellite imagery, it looks as though much of the country has a tannish color which you would think is dry and has less vegetation compared to neighboring countries.  The country actual has quite a bit of rainfall, and the suspect for all the dry-looking areas is farming fields for things such as rice.  This is serious manual labor with constant bending and speedy methods.  Though in a culture, and broader surrounding region that uses rice so frequently in their meals, having these type of farms is necessary to everyday life.

Denise Pacheco's curator insight, December 17, 2013 12:03 PM

Just watching them work makes my back hurt. I feel terribel for them, but it is their job. I wonder if there are any machines or tools that they can use to get their job done more uickly and easier. Agriculture started off just like this. It was only people planting and doing all the work, but now in there are machines used for this new generation of agriculture. It's just sad that many countries still can't afford all these tools or machines. So unfortunately, people do have to physically hurt themselves or go through some sort of pain just to get things done. But this video makes me appreicate more where my food is coming from, because the foods that I buy does come from all over the world.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

Flexible Urban Planning

mixed used train-tracks/market place...


Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This short video is pretty shocking and quite interesting.  It shows how megacities use every space possible to do business.  This shows the importance of urban planning and using space very efficiently.  The existence of megacities have been and still are on the rise and flexible urban planning must be considered when studying megacities.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 2:38 PM

I found this video disturbing.  Maybe because we have train safety taught to us were they stress that you need to stay away from the tracks, here the people are sitting next to a train track and even have goods for sale that the train drives over.  I think it is interesting how they reclaim the space but the mom in me worries about kids getting run over by the train.

David Week's curator insight, August 12, 6:04 PM

I love this video. Never think that the "third world" is not more dynamic and innovative than the first!

Jeffrey Ing's curator insight, August 13, 5:12 AM

people are not giving up with inflated price of urban land. They adapt and live with it :)


Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Meagan's Geoography 400!

Over 27 and unmarried? In China, you’re an old maid

Over 27 and unmarried? In China, you’re an old maid | Geography 400 |
January and February are sweet times for most Chinese — they enjoy family reunions during the spring festival, which this year fell on January 23, and they celebrate Valentine’s Day, which is well-liked in China.


Gender roles in cultural norms change from country to country.  What also needs to be understood is how the demographic situation of a given country influences these patterns. 

Via Seth Dixon, Meagan Harpin
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This article is interesting as it discusses one example of how gender roles and cultural norms differ from country to country.  Chinese women who are around 30 years old and single are referred to as "leftover girls".  Similar to a growing trend in the United States, Chinese women are focusing on their careers and their own goals and waiting to marry until they find the right person and have their own lives in order.  However, in the United States, this way of life for women is more socially acceptable whereas in China, it is not as acceptable for these "leftover girls".

Caz Boelman's comment, May 3, 2013 12:50 PM
Even though there is a major lack of women in China it is still hard for some to find love. Usually by the time a women reaches 27 and unmarried, she will most likely not find a husband.
Meagan Harpin's curator insight, October 9, 2013 1:22 PM

It is hard for Chinese women to attract men once they reach a certain age in Beijing it was reported in 2009 that there was 800,000 women 27 and unmarried and the number was rising. Many mothers of these women even argue with them or try to set them up with men they dont like. In the US women are getting married older and older and it is viewed as socially acceptable mainly because they are focusing on their carrers and making sure they are settled first. 

Marissa Roy's curator insight, December 5, 2013 1:32 PM

It is interesting to see this as in American culture, marrying in your 20s is not a necessity anymore, it's almost unexpected. With so many men to choose from, these girls have time to find a man. The culture is going to shift as these ladies get married later in life.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

India and Pakistan Reunited

"It’s rare that a video from a brand will spark any real emotion--but a new spot from Google India is so powerful, and so honest to the product, that it’s a testament not only to the deft touch of the ad team that put it together, but to the strength of Google’s current offering."--Forbes

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

Even though this video is an advertisement for Google, it is so cool.  The video is an indirect lesson of history.  That is, it teaches the long term effects of the India and Pakistan partition on people of these countries.  The partition sadly separated people who were very close to one another and this video/advertisement shows the effect that the partition had.

Marissa Roy's curator insight, December 2, 2013 4:46 PM

I watched this short commercial with my geography class. While watching, you could almost forget that it was only a commercial. The commercial brings up that the internet can be a great tool in finding information. It also shows that the internet breaks down boundaries that had been impossible to get over physically.

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 11, 3:59 AM

These ads reflect the changing culture of India. There is a more progressive culture taking hold which is quite possibly caused by the effects of globalization. Along with India's industrialization, technology is a factor in the culture change. Taboo topics, like remarriage and the partition with Pakistan, are being used by advertisers be provocative without being offensive to most people.


The culture of India will undoubtedly be affected by its media representing more progressive ideas as well. Repeated exposure to these ideas will create new generations of Indians more comfortable with remarriage, much like newer generations in the United States are more comfortable with gay marriage.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 9:21 PM

Commercials work even when they don't. When its an annoying commercial, everyone still remembers exactly what the commercial is for. What Google does here is brilliant. This is very powerful and the reunited states could be an idea to get used to.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

Pakistan Trees Cocooned in Spider Webs

Pakistan Trees Cocooned in Spider Webs | Geography 400 |
Documented by an aid worker, millions of spiders took to the trees to spin their webs after heavy floods inundated Pakistan in 2010.


Besides being an aesthetic wonder, this image is a great way to start a discussion about so many distinct issues. The floods of 2010 devastated the human population, killing over 2,000. These same floods also altered the ecosystem as spiders have needed to adapt to their new inundated landscape as well. For the human population, this has had the shocking benefit of lowering the incidents of malaria since the spiders have more effectively limited the mosquito population. Interconnections...geographic information are a spider web of interconnections between nature and humanity.

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This National Geographic photo is interesting as it shows spider webs wrapped around trees during the 2010 floods in Pakistan.  While it may seem weird or gross to some, the fact that there were spider webs in the trees is actually very important in a geographical context because spiders eat mosquitos, meaning the incidents of malaria were lowered during this time.

Matt Mallinson's comment, November 7, 2012 3:29 PM
This is crazy! It's a great thing that the spiders help by eating the disease filled mosquitos....but i still hate spiders.
Crissy Borton's curator insight, December 11, 2012 10:28 PM

I thought that was such a beautiful picture until I learned the tree was covered in spider webs and then it creeped me out. However it is such a good thing for the people there. Those webs will help trap the diseased mesquites. 

Cam E's curator insight, April 1, 11:07 AM

As cool as it is creepy. I'm reminded of entire fields of spider webs after similar heavy flooding in Australia. I certainty would get nowhere near those trees if this were to happen locally.

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Selective Abortions Blamed For Girl Shortage In India

Selective Abortions Blamed For Girl Shortage In  India | Geography 400 |
Much of Indian culture regards boys as assets to families and girls as liabilities.
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This is an NPR article about female feticide.  Female feticide has been a growing trend in India.  Families who are expecting a child undergo ultrasounds to learn the gender of the fetus, and if it is a girl, the mothers abort the fetus.  Families would rather have boys because they are less expensive to care for than girls and because boys are culturally seen as a bigger asset to the Indian family.  Female feticide is a problem in India because it creates a disproportion between girls and  boys.  For every 1,000 boys under age 6, there are only 940 girls, while the worldwide average is 986 girls for every 1,000 boys.  This causes a problem when it comes time for boys to get married because there is a shortage of girls.  Also, if girls are not born, then reproduction will slow down to the point where it could end.

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Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

'Absolute Bedlam' In The Philippines After Typhoon Haiyan

'Absolute Bedlam' In The Philippines After Typhoon Haiyan | Geography 400 |

The news from the Philippines, where it's feared that last week’s powerful Typhoon Haiyan killed more than 10,000 people, isn’t getting better as hundreds of thousands of people struggle to survive and authorities struggle to get help to them.


"Its absolute bedlam right now," says Richard Gordon, head of the Philippine Red Cross.  “There's an awful lot of casualties, a lot of people dead all over the place, a lot of destruction.”


According to the BBC, a huge international relief effort is underway, but rescue workers have struggled to reach some towns and villages cut off since the storm.


Tags: physical, environment, water, disasters, Philippines.

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

Even though the death toll resulting from Typhoon Haiyan is around 1,000, it is expected to reach 10,000.  International aid will hopefully help cities such as Tacloban City recover from this storm.

Al Picozzi's curator insight, November 13, 2013 10:00 PM

Just the remoteness of the area is going to hinder the relief efforts.  Even though the supplies are getting through it is getting through to the areas that need it the most is the problem.  When the infrastructure is not that good to begin with, the damage done by this kind of disaster is multiplied.  Look at New Orleans when Katrina hit.  It still took days for relief and just water to get where it was needed.  Imagine what that would have been like if the infrastructure was like like that of the Philippines.  The country is overwhelmed by this disaster and needs the help.  Its getting it but the problem still exists of how to distrbute it now that it is there.  Makes you wonder if Subic Bay was still open as a US military base if it would have made it easier.  Sometimes having a military base is not a bad thing.

Jack Born's curator insight, November 14, 2013 9:16 PM

This is insane. It has affected millions of people and and even killed people. Its good that so many people are going to help though.

Tracy Galvin's curator insight, May 3, 7:05 PM

With so many of the citizens living on the coast, a large typhoon like this completely destroys most of the country. When this much devastation happens all at one time it takes a very long time to recover.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

Pink Lakes

Pink Lakes | Geography 400 |
Photo by Jean Paul Ferrero/Ardea/Caters News (via Exposing the Truth   Lake Hillier is a pink-coloured lake on Middle Island in Western Australia. Middle island is the largest of the islands a...

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This is such a cool photo and interesting phenomenon.  The photo is of Lake Hillier, a pink-colored lake located on Middle Island, one of 105 islands that make up an archipelago off the coast of Western Australia.  There are many scientific speculations as to why the lake is pink.  I find it to be very interesting and wonder more about the lake, such as if it effects the marine life in the lake and if its color effects the ability or inability to use the water as a natural resource.

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, April 23, 6:01 PM

This lake is so majestic and beautiful but how does it have this pink color? Well it gets the pink color from the sand it is surrounded by and is one of the largest Middle islands in Australia. 

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 8:13 PM

This beautiful lake is a phenomenon the reason for its color is still unknown but it makes a very memorable lake!

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 1, 10:44 AM

The cause of the pink lake is still a mystery. Scientists believe the pink could be due to lack of nutrients or other substances. I think this is truly remarkable! Its beautiful to say the least. 

Scooped by Rebecca Farrea!

Bye-bye Bora Bora -- 15 other islands in French Polynesia

Bye-bye Bora Bora -- 15 other islands in French Polynesia | Geography 400 |
From Fakarava to Rangiroa, French Polynesia's "other" islands are great fun to say, even better to visit.
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This CNN link explores Polynesian islands that many people have never even heard of.  Many choose the popular, well-known Polynesian islands, such as Bora Bora, as vacationing destinations, but there are many "other" islands that might be even better destination spots that so many do not know about.  I wonder what makes a particular island more well known than another.  How do people choose which island to vacation on?  Is the popularity of Bora Bora over other "better" Polynesian islands a coincidence or is that done on purpose?

No comment yet.
Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

The Border That Stole 500 Birthdays

The Border That Stole 500 Birthdays | Geography 400 |
The story behind the the International Date Line.


Not too long ago (Jan. 2012), the arbitrary International Date Line (roughly opposite the Prime Meridian) was moved to better accommodate the regional networks and economic geography of the area straddling the line.  American Samoa, although politically aligned with the United States, was functionally more integrated on the Asian side of the Pacific Rim when it came to their trade partners and their tourism base.  Dynamic economic networks, political allegiances and cultural commonalities create a beautifully complex situation near this 'border.'    

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This is an interesting article.  I knew of the International Date Line, but I did not know anything about it or what it meant.  It is a line that is roughly opposite the Prime Meridian that when crossed, the day advances forward, from Monday to Tuesday for example.  The line is interesting because it is meant to not stir any problems.  It goes through Siberia and the North Pacific Ocean since virtually no one lives in those areas.  Even though less people live in the Pacific and South Pacific Islands than say, Europe and Africa or North and South America, people still do live here and they are negatively affected by the date line.  American Samoa and Samoa, two islands made up of the same ethnic groups, are separated by the date line.  Being separated by time zones affecting people by a few hours seems bad enough, but being separated by an entire day just does not work for many people.

Al Picozzi's curator insight, December 5, 2013 4:42 PM

It made sense for American Samoa to ask for the move even though it is US territory.  It is more closely linked with the economies of the China, Japan, Australia, New Zeland and South Korea.  For them to all be on the same day just makes sense.  You can coordinate things better if everyone is on the same day, financial markets and be in line when the trading day starts and ends.  Seems to me to make sense that they are on the same day as their main economic partners.

Ryan Amado's curator insight, December 11, 2013 5:42 AM

This line clearly needs to be redrawn.  It just does not make sense that it could be monday in one area and tuesday 50 miles directly south of it.  While the new dateline does not necessarily have to be perfectly straight, it should at least not go directly horizontal as it does now.  Whoever lies on the line must deal with whatever place they have been placed in, and not complain.

Marissa Roy's curator insight, December 11, 2013 11:05 AM

My class examined this and we agree that it makes sense that American Samoa would want to be those they do business with like Asia, Australia and New Zealand.  ALthough American Samoa is a US territory, it definately does more business with the countries who are nearby and therefore they should be pushed to the other side of the dateline.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

Vanuatu: Meet The Natives

"Five men from the remote Pacific island of Tanna arrive in America to experience western culture for the first time, and force us to look at ourselves through brand new eyes..."


This cross-cultural experiment reinforces numerous stereotypes, but also seeks to get viewers to look at issues from a variety of perspectives.  Folk cultures, modernization and globalization are all major themes of this show.     

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This video is a trailer for a television show called Meet the Natives, which not surprisingly did not have many episodes.  The show featured five men from a Pacific island and their visit to the United States where they experienced American culture for the first time.  It is evident in just the trailer that the show reinforced many stereotypes of Pacific islanders and Americans that are obviously not necessarily true.  The video shows Pacific islanders living very primitively which is not at all the case.  It is important to view these stereotypes with a critical eye so that we do not simply believe everything we see and think everything we see is the truth.

Caleb Gard's curator insight, December 12, 2013 10:15 PM

These five men that were from the Pacific Island of Tanna go to America to get an experience for themselves of western culture for the first time. They travel many miles to find out for themselves what our culture was like. In doing this they brought over their own culture into America, making this a great expierience for themselves and those that they came in contact with on their journey. When these men came from Tanna to America to experience the cultural difference between the two places. Some long term effects of this experience is that the men might bring American cultures into their tribe, and they most likley had brought their cultures over here with the people that they came in contact with. Over all this excurssion will help the people cominig on contact with it learn about others cultural defferences from their own.

Paige McClatchy's curator insight, December 14, 2013 6:14 PM

This promotion for the series "Meet the Natives" is a laughable cross-cultural experiment in forced globalization. While there are many political and cultural problems with this video, perhaps the Vanuatu people are less isolated and exotic than we really think. It's naive to think they are totally backward with no interest in connecting with the world.

Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, April 23, 6:46 PM

It is amazing to see travels of Pacific Islanders to America and their brief takes on their journey. Usually it is the other way around with the Americans telling the stories. These pacific islanders are greeted by their friends upon their arrival home and talk about how they met so many great people.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

Break Dancing, Phnom Penh-Style

Break Dancing, Phnom Penh-Style | Geography 400 |
A former gang member from Long Beach, California, teaches break dancing to at-risk youth in Cambodia.


This video is a great example of cross-cultural interactions in the era of globalization.  Urban youth culture of the United States is spread to Cambodia through a former refugee (with a personally complex political geography).  What geographic themes are evident in this video? How is geography being reshaped and by what forces?

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This video posted by the New York times focuses on a former gang member from Long Beach, California who teaches break dancing and other lessons to at-risk children in Cambodia.  This shows the impact that globalization has on the world.  Certain types of music and dancing spread and become popular worldwide and the lessons taught by the music and culture also spread internationally.  The man from California uses dancing to teach children across the globe in a world that is different but also similar to his own.  Geography is being reshaped by cultural interests such as music and dancing in order to teach important lessons to children.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 18, 5:43 PM

This man was originally from California, but was kicked out of America and now lives in Cambodia. “KK” introduces break dancing, rapping and even taught basic computer skills to the at risk children of Cambodia. The children are some of the best break-dancers I have ever seen. A man by the name of "KK" inspired and gave the youth of Cambodia hope. 

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 1, 11:00 AM

Bringing different cultures into different lifestyles is an important part of cultural history. Every culture is linked in some way to another one. What this break dancer does to help these kids is awesome. As a former Cambodian refugee he had never been to Cambodia but was sent back there. His L.A./past gang influences have helped many kids to stay away from gangs and to take up schooling and break dancing instead.

Paige Therien's curator insight, May 2, 3:05 PM

Urban United States culture has been introduced to Cambodia's youth by K.K.  K.K., who lived in California his whole life as the child of Cambodian refugees, was deported to Cambodia, a place he had never even visited before, due to a felony charge.  K.K created an organization which taught Cambodia's youth about HIV protection, computers, and drugs.  He made his organization attractive to Cambodian youth by introducing them break-dancing and rapping.  In the U.S. these activities are often viewed in a negative light, but K.K. used them positively by introducing them to a population with no prior knowledge of them.  He also recreated his own identity by mixing his new, vastly unknown Cambodian experience with his life experiences from the U.S.   He is an example of the many people who struggle with forming a more global identity in our global world.  This organization targets at-risk kids and K.K. is probably trying to direct their lives the way he may wish someone had done for him. 

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

Video: Fighting Poverty with Ingenuity

I absolutely love creative, out-of-the-box, innovative people! People who use their creativity to make a difference in the World.... Incredible! "We want to ...


Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This video is truly amazing and so interesting.  I wonder how people come up with the idea to put the water and bleach in a soda bottle to create light in very dark homes.  Just getting people in the United States to properly recycle their soda bottles is difficult enough, nevermind getting people to think outside of the box and create new innovations that save money and really work.  The man who created these light sources is seen as a true hero in this area because he has helped so many.  This video is incredible and is really telling of what people are able to do to help others if they just put in the time.

Seth Dixon's curator insight, August 25, 2013 9:21 PM

Find out more about this organization at:

Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, April 16, 6:13 PM

Turning trash into treasure is the simplest way to describe this phenomenon.  Soda bottles are easily turned into light bulbs in areas that do not receive much natural light. This alternative to electricity is perfect for an area of low income. They are able to get more done and keep costs down low while getting rid of water bottles at the same time.

Paige Therien's curator insight, April 24, 1:09 PM

Manila is one of the largest cities in the Phillippines, an archipelago consisting of more than 7,000 islands.  In terms of infrastructure, one huge problem that an archipelago like the Phillippines has to deal with is getting electricity to span over the entrie country and reach all of it's citizens.  One way of "solving" this is by not doing anything at all; as a result,  millions in Manila live in darkness.  This probably has negative effects in terms of mental health and limits people to doing things outside and in times of daylight.  One man is turning this around by installing plastic water bottles filled with water and bleach into people's ceilings.  They offer quite a bit of illumination and they are changing people's lives.  This idea would be laughed at in places like the United States.  In Manila however, not only are they completely recycling bottles which are imported from different countries and then take up room and add to pollution, they are easily and economically addressing a huge need in the country.  The houses, which are built using corregated metal, allow the technical aspect of this idea to work.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

Worker safety in China

This is an incredible video because of the shocking footage of blatant disregard for worker safety.  This can lead to an interesting discussion concerning how China has been able to have its economy grow.  What other ways has China (or Chinese companies) been "cutting corners?"  How does that give them a competitive edge on the global industrial market?     

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This video is so shocking.  It shows the disregard for worker safety in China.  Chinese companies cut corners and do not spend money on things such as wages and worker safety policies and organizations.  Yes, this might boost the Chinese economy and allow China to save money and produce as much as possible for cheap, but this is not okay for workers.  Imagine if OSHA saw this video.

Paige McClatchy's curator insight, December 14, 2013 5:13 PM

This video is jaw-dropping proof of how China cuts corners in their quest for growing their economy. With such a large population looking for work China does not really need to protect their workers. I wonder if China will experience a labor movement similar to the one in the US that introduced protective legislation.

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 12, 9:19 AM

This video shows a complete lack of concern for worker safety in China. The workers use the backhoe as a makeshift platform so one of them can cut the rebar suspending a massive piece of concrete from the side of the building. These kinds of shortcuts are the ways which China is able to keep a competitive edge in the world market. With hardly any regard for fair wages, worker safety, or worker rights, China is able to manufacture goods for prices no one else can compete with. Eventually, China will face opposition from its workforce as its industry matures and the government can either appease them or face revolution.

Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, April 14, 6:47 PM

In Beijing, workers safety is not a top priority. This video may shock viewers to the extreme levels workers will go to for such a small paycheck. This worker, many stories up climbs onto an excavator to be lowered down to a area that could not be reached. It is insane how these unsafe conditions compare to Americas. It makes you wonder how China has such a growing economy and a global leader when when things like this are happening on a day to day basis.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

China to ease one-child policy, abolish labor camps, report says

China to ease one-child policy, abolish labor camps, report says | Geography 400 |
China announces it will relax its one-child policy and abolish labor camps, the state-run Xinhua news agency reports.

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

For people with absolutely no education on China or Chinese history, they most likely have at least heard of the One Child Policy.  Even if they do not know the policy's details or its many exceptions, they do know that the policy exists in China.  This article is interesting in that it describes more changes that are being made to the policy to hopefully promote human rights in China.  Even though the One Child Policy lowered China's population, many Chinese believe that the policy hurts their families because it creates loneliness and it leads to abortions and heavy fines for having a second child.  Now, if one parent was an only child, that family may have a second child to ease loneliness.  There are many other exceptions to the policy, but hopefully new changes promote human rights and allow families to live better.

Victoria McNamara's curator insight, December 11, 2013 11:26 AM

Throughout many years China has always had strict laws on how many children families should have. They recently started to ease their laws to allow people to have more than one child. I could see why they had their laws be only one child because they have such a big population. I also disagree with it because families should be able to have as many children as they want. 

Tracy Galvin's curator insight, May 3, 5:09 PM

The one-child policy has caused more problems than it has solved. China now has a larger male population than its female population and competition for brides is rampant. The labor camps were not actually training people in the way they wanted to, it was just an excuse to lock up people for petty crime and get free labor out of them. Hopefully, China will continue analyzing their social policies and making changes to better the country

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 9:32 PM

The one-child labor law is one that should be extinct now. China needs to up their standards of living and allow people their freedom of choice. Who cares if the living situations are crammed to begin with? People need to have their right to choose how many children they do or don't have.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Meagan's Geoography 400!

Once a Producer, China is now a Consumer

China is now the world's largest car market, and a crucial one for Detroit companies. Chinese consumers bought 18.5 million vehicles last year, and foreigners, especially Americans, have played a key role in developing the industry.


China now is the world's largest auto market as China is no longer simply a place where things are produced.  China has become a major consumer of goods as their workers wages allow them to consume more goods. 


Via Seth Dixon, Meagan Harpin
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This is an interesting headline and topic because so many Americans blame China for job loss, when in reality, China is no longer at the forefront of manufacturing and industry.  China is consuming from foreign markets, such as the United States, just as it has been producing and manufacturing goods.

Meagan Harpin's curator insight, October 9, 2013 1:00 PM

China has become the worlds largest car market and General motors planned to open another 600 dealerships because it sells more cars in China then it does in the US. China have even become a bigger consumer in of goods, when this atricle was released they were purchasing 18.5 million worth of goods. That has alot to do with the increased pay they are now recieving as well.  

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

Dhaka: fastest growing megacity in the world

A five-part, multimedia series on the coming dystopia that is urbanization.


This is a great introduction to the explosion of the slums within megacities.  This video as a part of the article is especially useful.   Click on the title to read the accompanying article.

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This video is incredibly interesting in that it describes just what it means to be the fastest growing megacity in the world.  Every year, hundreds of thousands of people are moving to Dhaka, Bangladesh from smaller towns outside the capital city.  The current population of Dhaka is 15 million but people are migrating to the city so quickly that it does not take very long for the census data to become outdated.  People are moving to Dhaka with hopes of a better life for themselves and their families.  Their situation upon moving goes from worst to bad.  People move out of slums and squatter settlements in their hometowns into other slums and squatter settlements in Dhaka, but they still believe they are beginning a better life.  There are many interesting aspects of this video.  For one, there is a girl who is happy because she works in a fabric factory and she might receive a $4/month increase in pay.  To us in the United States, this is nothing, but to her, it is a huge help to her and her family.  Also, there is a girl who could rarely afford fish or meats but she can now buy one good piece of meat each week because she can afford it in Dhaka.  While there are many glimpses of hope and opportunities to live better lives in Dhaka as seen in this video, there are many geographical implications for Dhaka as it becomes larger and larger each day.  The government is very informal and people who move to Dhaka do not have any land to build homes on, so they build illegally on someone else's land.  Also, traffic on Dhaka's streets is, for lack of a better term, insane.  The city just cannot handle all of the migration from elsewhere.  Resources such as clean water and food are very slim.  Even though Dhaka might suffer as a city due to its rapid growth and inability to support everyone, newcomers still choose Dhaka as the gateway to a better life.

Brett Sinica's curator insight, November 19, 2013 2:21 PM

I recently did a project on the topic of megacities in the past, present, and future and how the natural risks they posed.  In past decades there was Tokyo, New York City, or even Mexico City.  I also covered present cities such as Shangai and Los Angeles to name a few.  The city that basically topped the growth charts in my statistics was Dhaka.  The city literally is growing like a chia pet, but with no direct plan or proper use of land.  According to future calculations, the city of Dhaka can reach roughly 23 million by 2025, that's about 600,000 new people coming in every year up until that point.  This video is just an example of how poorly planned this megacity is, and what the future holds for all of the people living there.  It's simply chaos.  There are already squatter settlements and unorganized living conditions for the current residents, picturing the population to grow even more is outrageous!

Meagan Harpin's curator insight, November 20, 2013 11:43 AM

The city of Dhaka has experienced a massivie boom in population. Both the rich and the poor are flowing into this city causing many problems that all complain the government is ignoring instead of fixing. The city is very inefficient, with traffic so bad that it is costing the city millions of dollars. There are frequent water shortages resulting in protests in the streets. There is much infrastructure throughout the city as well. But it is also represents a sense of hope to the people that are coming in and moving into the slums, that with the better jobs and money they will be able to get they can better provide for themselves or their family.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 6, 11:23 PM

Dhaka is the fastest growing city in the world, as rich and poor people move to the city everyday. So many poor people are moving here due to the fact there is no other place worth living in Bangladesh. The city is facing many problems, such as lack of traffic signals, minimal clean drinking water for residents and horrible housing for many people. However, some feel the city’s slums offer the best chance for an improved life.   

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

How did Pakistan get it's name?

How did Pakistan get it's name? | Geography 400 |

"The name of the country Pakistan has a fascinating history - it is essentially an acronym!  Prior to 1947, the country now known as Pakistan was a British colony. In 1947 the United Kingdom granted independence to the region under a new name, Pakistan. The name had been developed by a group of students at Cambridge University who issued a pamphlet in 1933 called Now or Never."


In a country with such great ethnic divisions, a common religion is a powerful nationalizing force.  As the capital city of Islamabad's toponym powerfully states (the house or abode of Islam), religion remains an important element of national identity for Pakistanis.   

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

It is interesting to learn how particular countries got their names.  Pakistan was a British colony until 1947 and it was given the name Pakistan as an acronym for the 8 homelands in the country.  Pakistan is so ethnically divided that religion is really important for the country to stay together.

Robert T. Preston's comment, June 6, 2013 9:28 PM
Most sites agree that this is how the country got it's name. "Stan" means homeland, but the rest of the nation's provinces provided the name when combined.
Meagan Harpin's curator insight, October 15, 2013 9:13 PM

In 1947 the United Kingdom granted independence to this region and named it Pakistan. The name was created by a group of students at Cambrige University and used the names of their homelands. Punjab, Afghania  Kashmir, Iran ,Sindh, Tukharistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan is an acronym! 

Brett Sinica's curator insight, November 19, 2013 2:27 PM

When you take in the way that the British Empire controlled many colonies and tried to spread their culture to such diverse regions, it is no suprise that Pakistan was named essentially by a game of Scrabble.  I suppose the naming is somewhat creative and certainly unique compared to how other countries get their names, yet just picturing a group of colleagues naming a country is strange.  Though the U.K. did grant them independance, how independant were they really if they weren't even given the right to name their own land.

Rescooped by Rebecca Farrea from Geography Education!

India's Census: Lots Of Cellphones, Too Few Toilets

The results of India's once-in-a-decade census reveal a country of 1.2 billion people where millions have access to the latest technology, but millions more lack sanitation and drinking water.


More Indians are entering the middle class as personal wealth is transforming South Asia's economy in the private sector.  Yet the government's ability to provide public services to match that growth still lags behind.  Why would it be that it is easier to get a cell phone than a toilet in India?  What will that mean for development?  

Via Seth Dixon
Rebecca Farrea's insight:

This article explains that while more than half of the Indian population has access to technology such as cell phones, televisions, and DVD players, less than half has a toilet in their home.  I could not wrap my head around that statement when I first heard it in class, but after reading the article on my own, it is a little bit clearer.  Individuals in India are able to support themselves economically as the middle class is growing, which is a positive statement, but the Indian government cannot keep up with the growth.  Therefore, an individual may have a cell phone, but no toilet because the government cannot supply enough clean water for the people.  It seems like the individual is stronger and more sufficient than the government.  What might this mean for the future of the Indian government?

Paige Therien's curator insight, April 17, 1:41 PM

India's economy is transforming, but only for individuals, who are quickly becoming rich or, more commonly, part of the growing middle class.  This change, mixed with a corrupt, non-incentivized  government is creating a picture of uneven development in India.  The government is not supplying basic needs to the growing population, which mainly effects the poor.  Half of the population are lacking basic sanitation and access to clean water.  These needs can only be met with a strong infrastructure, which the government has neither the money nor the motivation to rebuild.  However, Indians do have the access to things like cellphones and televisions.  This is due to the fact that these goods are privatized and easy to obtain (as opposed to ripping apart a city to put infrastructure in place).  So, uneven development is seen not only in the general economy, but also in access to resources and material goods. 

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, June 17, 6:42 AM

Consequences of urbanisation

Seth Dixon's curator insight, August 30, 10:36 PM

More Indians are entering the middle class as personal wealth is transforming South Asia's economy in the private sector.  Yet the government's ability to provide public services to match that growth still lags behind.  Why would it be that it is easier to get a cell phone than a toilet in India?  What will that mean for development in India?  These comedians are seeking to use humor to bring this issue to light.